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In Kashmir, two militants kill two IAF commandos, gunned down

Security personnel rush towards the encounter site at Hajin area of Kashmir’s Bandipora district. File photo   | Photo Credit: Nissar Ahmad

Two Indian Air Force (IAF) men and two Lashkar-e-Taiba’s (LeT) militants were killed in a gunfight in north Kashmir’s Bandipora on Wednesday morning, marking a tactical shift of the security grid in the wake of reports of identification of high-value targets by LeT and Jaish-e-Muhammad (JeM).

“In the intense operation, two militants and two IAF Garud personnel were killed. The Garud personnel were operating with the Army for operational experience and training,” Srinagar-based army spokesman Colonel Rajesh Kalia told The Hindu.

Intelligence sources said the move to involve non-insurgency force like IAF was necessitated “by fresh inputs about JeM and LeT identifying high-value targets, which include complexes of navy and air force stationed in the valley.”

The first response in case of any attack on non-counterinsurgency force has to come from its own forces stationed in the installations, said sources. “Therefore, training along with the counter-insurgency force could be helpful during surprise attacks,” said a top official.

JeM has already carried out two sensational fidayeen (suicide) attacks, including one on District Police Line (DPL), Pulwama, on August 26 and the BSF camp housed next to the Srinagar airport on October 3.

In Wednesday’s first combined operation, the IAF Garuda personnel killed were identified as corporal Nalesh Kumar Nayan and commando Surjeet K Milind Kishor.

Kishor, 33, from Maharashtra had joined the IAF in 2002 and Nayan, 31, had donned the uniform in 2005.

“These commandos bore the brunt of first bout of impact of grenades and fire opened by the militants when their movement was spotted on a street,” said a police official in Bandipora.

The two LeT militants killed in the operation were identified as Nasrullah Mir alias Anna, a resident of Mir Mohalla Hajin and foreign militant Ali Bai alias Maaz  alias Abu Bakker.

“Two AK riles, one pistol, 19 pistol rounds, one grenade, two pouches and other ammunition was recovered from the encounter site,” said the police.

The police said the slain militants were involved in the attack on BSF jawan Mohammad Ramzan alias Rameez at his home with knives on September 28.

“These militants were also involved in firing on a patrolling party, in which one army captain and two army jawans were injured,” said the police.

Mir, who participated in street protests earlier, had disappeared in March this year and joined LeT and revived its ranks in Hajin.

Hundreds of locals joined the funeral of the slain local militant. The authorities snapped internet services. Educational institutions were also closed in Bandipora.

However, fierce stone pelting followed the funeral prayers, disrupting the daily life in Hajin. The body of foreign militant was secretly buried in Baramulla’s Uri-Gantmohalla area.

2 policemen held for supplying ammunition to Hizb

Meanwhile, the police held two policemen and an over-ground worker (OGW) who supplied ammunition to Hizb-ul-Mujahideen militants in south Kahsmir.

An official said Adil Ahmad Negroo, an OGW, was held at a check point near Circuit House Shopian in suspicious conditions on October 9.

“Twenty live rounds of AK-47 were found from his possession. Negroo is a strong OGW of active militant Waseem Wagay alias Saifullah and Ishfaq Thoker alias Abrar of Hizbul Mujahideen outfit,” said the police.

On questioning, according to the police, the detained OGW revealed his friend Mudasir Ahmad Mir of Okay Kulgam had received 40 rounds of AK-47 from one constable Shabir Ahmad Malik of Amshipora Shopian, presently posted in Ganderbal.

The police have apprehended policeman Malik. It further surfaced that 40 rounds were also supplied by constable Nazir Ahmad Najar of Kulgam, who is currently posted in Kot DPL Shopian, said the police.

“Further investigation is on in the arrests,” said the police.

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Printable version | May 12, 2021 9:31:56 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/two-commandos-two-militants-killed-in-jk-gunfight/article19837942.ece

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