A family that was held captive was rescued after 12 hours near Srinagar

The Jammu and Kashmir police on Monday killed two militants of the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) in a 22-hour gun battle at Ahmadnagar on the northern outskirts of Srinagar.

Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Abdul Gani Mir told TheHindu that the two militants, who had injured two head constables, were identified as Abu Hufeza and Chhota Hafiz of the LeT.

They are believed to be Pakistani nationals, but their belongings, including two AK rifles and some incriminating documents, are still under scrutiny, the IGP said. Two CRPF personnel were also reportedly injured in the operation.

The IGP said the militants had taken a family captive and it took the security forces around 12 hours to evacuate the hostages. “When we swooped down on the locality on a tip-off last evening, the militants entered a house and held the inmates hostage at gunpoint. Our first priority was to ensure that there was no civilian casualty. We launched the assault only after we succeeded in rescuing all the family members,” Mr. Mani said. The local residents, however, said no one was taken hostage by the militants.

Meanwhile, a valley-based militant outfit — Jamiatul Mujahideen — claimed that the two slain militants belonged to its outfit. The group, however, did not give their identity or residence particulars.

The encounter in Srinagar took place four hours after two LeT militants, identified as Usman Gauri and Abu Zarr of Abbottabad, Pakistan, were killed by the army and police in a joint operation near Khrew on Sunday.

They were intercepted while fleeing from Khrew after launching an attack on the house of Jammu and Kashmir High Court judge Justice Hasnain Massodi, whose son Yawar is a leader of the ruling National Conference’s youth wing. Mr. Yawar, who, according to the police, was the target had a narrow escape as he escaped from the rear exit.


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