Army rescued three youths who were allegedly recruited forcibly for the Hizbul Mujahideen, from the custody of militants in Kishtwar district, police said here today.

Ghulam Mohmmad (22) and Mohmmad Iqbal (23) were rescued when troops of 17 Rastriya Rifles launched a cordon and search operation in Patimahal and Palmar forest belts in the district last night, they said.

During the operation, troops intercepted a group of militants who were taking the recruits to the ‘District Commander’ of the outfit who is named as Wasif, they said

Similarly, in a separate incident, 18-year-old Mohmmad Farooq was rescued in the same area on Saturday.

The youths were handed over to their families, they said adding the recruits were to be trained in using local arms and given weapons for suspected terror activities.