A view of a house damaged in an encounter between the security forces and militants  Pulwama town, South of Kashmir
A view of a house damaged in an encounter between the security forces and militants Pulwama town, South of Kashmir
Sajad Hameed

A Pakistani commander of Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) and his two local accomplices were killed in an encounter with security forces in Pulwama district of Jammu and Kashmir on Wednesday, police said. Inspector General of Police, Kashmir Zone, Vijay Kumar congratulated the security forces for the operation.

"Pakistani LeT Commander Aijaz alias Abu Huraira has been killed along with two local terrorists. Congratulations to the police and security forces," he tweeted.

A police spokesman said a cordon and search operation was launched Tuesday night by security forces following input about the presence of terrorists in Pulwama town.

"During the search operation, the civilians were evacuated to safer places and as the presence of terrorists got ascertained, they were given an opportunity to surrender. However, they fired indiscriminately upon the joint search party, which was retaliated leading to an encounter," he said.

He said the operation was suspended due to darkness but the cordon remained intact.

"Taking advantage of darkness terrorists tried to escape but failed. In the wee hours, repeated announcements were again made to hiding terrorists to surrender, but they again fired on the joint search party and the fire was retaliated," the spokesman added.

Take a look at these pictures:

Security personnel during an encounter with militants in Pulwama town, south of Kashmir,
Security personnel during an encounter with militants in Pulwama town, south of Kashmir,
Sajad Hameed
Security personnel during an encounter with militants in Pulwama town, south of Kashmir,
Security personnel during an encounter with militants in Pulwama town, south of Kashmir,
Security personnel during an encounter with militants in Pulwama town, south of Kashmir,
Security personnel during an encounter with militants in Pulwama town, south of Kashmir,
A view of a house damaged in an encounter between the security forces and militants  Pulwama town, South of Kashmir
A view of a house damaged in an encounter between the security forces and militants Pulwama town, South of Kashmir
Policemen stand guard on an armored vehicle as they move towards the site of a gunfight in Pulwama town
Policemen stand guard on an armored vehicle as they move towards the site of a gunfight in Pulwama town
A view of a house damaged in an encounter between the security forces and militants  Pulwama town, South of Kashmir
A view of a house damaged in an encounter between the security forces and militants Pulwama town, South of Kashmir
Kashmiri villagers inspect a house damaged in a gunfight in Pulwama, south of Srinagar
Kashmiri villagers inspect a house damaged in a gunfight in Pulwama, south of Srinagar
Kashmiri villagers inspect a house damaged in a gunfight in Pulwama, south of Srinagar
Kashmiri villagers inspect a house damaged in a gunfight in Pulwama, south of Srinagar

In the ensuing gunfight, he said, three terrorists of LeT were killed and their bodies retrieved from the encounter site.

"They have been identified as LeT commander Aijaz alias Abu Huraira, a resident of Pakistan, Javeed Ahmad Rather, a resident of Tahab Pulwama and Shahnawaz Nazir Ganie, a resident of Samboora Awantipora," the spokesman said.

As per police records, the slain were part of a group involved in various terror crimes for which cases stand registered against them, he said.

"The foreign terrorist, Aijaz, had a history of terror crime cases. He was also instrumental in recruiting innocent youth into terror folds, besides planning and executing several terror attacks in the area, including attacks on police and security establishments," the spokesman said.

He said incriminating material, including two AK rifles and a pistol, was recovered from the site of the encounter.

(With agency inputs)

(To receive our E-paper on whatsapp daily, please click here. We permit sharing of the paper's PDF on WhatsApp and other social media platforms.)

Free Press Journal

www.freepressjournal.in