Srinagar: Police in Jammu and Kashmir’s Baramulla district Saturday said seven guerrillas killed in a gunfight with security forces in a forest area in Kupwara Feb 24 were Pakistanis belonging to the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) outfit.
The guerrillas were killed in the Dardpora (Lolab) forests in a joint operation by the army and police, Deputy Inspector General of Police (North Kashmir) J.P. Singh told reporters.
He said people identified the slain guerrillas as part of an LeT group that was operating in the area and were seen a number of times by residents.
“We showed them photographs of the slain militants and they confirmed that the slain people were not locals, but foreign militants,” the DIG said.
He said the guerrillas were responsible for the killing of a police head constable some time back.
“On the basis of evidence collected, the militants were identified as Rehman, Qari, Dawood, Sufian, Kashif and Arqam, all residents of Pakistan, while the identity of the seventh militant is yet to be established,” he said.
Earlier, there were protests in the area with people disputing the identity of the slain people.
Separatist leaders said it was another incident of “civilian killings” by the security forces.
However, no resident has so far come forward to claim that any of the seven slain people was a member of his/her family.