Two militants of the Lashkar-e-Taiba were killed on Sunday in an encounter with the police and security forces in Pulwama district of South Kashmir.Sources said that the Pulwama District Police and troops of the Rashtriya Rifles 50th battalion swooped down on a hideout at Rishipora Kakpora on a tip-off about the presence of the militants. Both were killed in the three-hour-long gunbattle.Deputy Inspector-General of Police in South Kashmir Vijay Kumar told The Hindu that the LeT’s most wanted militant and “District Commander” Bilal Ahmad Bhat of Lelhar and a fresh recruit Mudasar Ahmad Sheikh of Kisrigam Pulwama died in the gunbattle. One AK-47 rifle and one pistol were recovered from the site of the operation.

The DIG claimed Bilal’s killing as a major achievement for the police and the security forces. He said that after Qasim, a dreaded Pakistani commander, Bilal was the LeT’s senior most militant in South Kashmir.

He was involved in an attack on the Army in 2012 when one soldier died. Bilal then escaped after looting their AK-47 rifles. He was also among the three local militants who attacked cardiologist Sheikh Jalal at Pampore in July 2013, killing two of his armed police guards on the spot. Dr. Jalal got critically injured and died in a month.