In a follow up telephonic conversation, DIG South Kashmir Vijay Kumar told The Hindu that the LeT’s local operative Irshad of Padgampora had attacked the CRPF men.

Striking in garrison township of Avantipur on Srinagar-Jammu highway, unidentified militants on Thursday evening shot dead two Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel.

Inspector General of Police, Kashmir, Abdul Gani Mir, told The Hindu that two gunmen, each carrying AK-47 rifle, fired at two constables of CRPF 130th battalion close to a revered saint’s shrine at Avantipur, 25 km from Srinagar, at 6 p.m. The constables Pradeep Ganna of Odisha and Mahesh Kumar of Maharashtra died on the spot.

Senior officials, rushed to the spot and launched a search operation. Officials were surprised over the fact that the attack had taken place near the battalion headquarters and the DIG CRPF’s office. Mr. Mir said police got certain clues which indicated that a group of local cadres of Lashkar-e-Taiba had carried out the operation.

In a follow up telephonic conversation, DIG South Kashmir Vijay Kumar told The Hindu that the LeT’s local operative Irshad of Padgampora had attacked the CRPF men. He said the militant escaped towards the Jhelum and crossed the river by a small boat.

An operation has been launched to trace Irshad and other members of the group, identified as Showkat Tak, Sajjad and Bilal. The DIG said the same group of LeT militants had last year shot dead a soldier, taken away his gun and left another soldier injured at Pampore. While Irshad was allegedly involved in killing eight soldiers of Army in a daredevil attack at Hyderpora on the eve of Prime Minister’s visit in June, Bilal, according to the police, had shot dead noted cardiologist and two of his personal security officers at Pampore earlier this year.

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