6 militants, IAF commando killed in Hajin encounter

A police official identified the slain commando as JP Nirala and injured soldier as Lance NaikRanjeet of Army’s 13 RR unit stationed at Manasbal.

Ejaz-ul-haq Bhat
Bandipora, Publish Date: Nov 19 2017 12:01AM | Updated Date: Nov 19 2017 1:30AM
6 militants, IAF commando killed in Hajin encounterGK Photo

Six militants and an Air Force commando were killed while an army soldier was injured in a fierce encounter in Hajin area of Bandipora district Saturday, police said.

A police official said a joint team of Army’s 13 RR, SOG of J&K Police and 45 BN CRPF laid cordon in Chandergair locality of Hajin at around 2:30 p.m. and started searches following inputs about presence of seven militants in the area.

“As the forces approached near the suspected spot, the hiding militants fired upon them which was retaliated, triggering a gunfight. During the initial exchange of fire two soldiers were injured including an IAF commando. The commando later succumbed,” he said.

“The encounter is now finished and was a success. Total of 6 LeT militants eliminated. Weapons and ammunition recovered (Sic),” DGP SP Vaid tweeted.

He said one of the killed militants named “Owaid is the son of Zaki-ur-Rehman Maki and nephew of Zaki-ur-RehmanLakhvi.”

“LeT commanders Abu Zargaam and Mahmood also eliminated in the operation today. All of the militants neutralized today were Pakistanis,” Vaid said in another tweet.

“Six militants and an IAF Garud commando were killed in Hajin encounter. An army soldier was also injured during the gunfight,” said Srinagar-based defense spokesman Col. Rajesh Kalia.

A police official identified the slain commando as JP Nirala and injured soldier as Lance NaikRanjeet of Army’s 13 RR unit stationed at Manasbal.

He identified the slain militants as Osama Jangvi alias Owaid - nephew of Zaki-ur-Rehman, Abu Zargaam, Mahmood Bhai - divisional commander of LeT in Hajin, Abu Qetaal, Abdullah and Maviya, all residents of Pakistan.

Zaki-ur-RehmanLakhvi’s another nephew Abu Musaib was killed in an encounter in Hajin on January 19.

A source in the police said that after the killing of Abu Musaib; Abu Zargaam and Mahmood Bhai were tasked were leading the LeT group in Bandipora and were mostly active in Hajin. “They were trapped in many encounters in Hajin in recent past but every time they managed to escape. On October 11 this year all of them were trapped in an encounter in Paribal locality of Hajin but they managed to escape from the spot. During the encounter, two militants and two commandos of IAF were killed,” the source said.

“Osama had joined them a few months ago and was tasked to strengthen the base of LeT as the killing of Musaib was seen as a big jolt to LeT in Kashmir. Last night forces had intercepted his phone and were on the look-out for him since then,” the police official said.

He said today the militants had gathered for a meeting in a residential house in Chandergair area.

Meanwhile, clashes erupted in the area as soon as the gunfight erupted. “Local residents including youth and women took to streets and pelted stones on government forces,” said a police official. The forces fired dozens of tear smoke shells, triggering intense clashes.

Internet services were snapped in Bandipora district after the gunfight broke out.

 

JOINT LEADERSHIP CALLS FOR SHUTDOWN TODAY

Kashmir’s joint separatist leadership comprising Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Muhammad Yasin Malik, has called for complete shutdown on Sunday against the “cordon and search operations being carried out by armed forces in the Valley during which dozens of youth have died in different areas, including HajinPulwama and Zakura".

In a statement the leadership said, “Section of youth feels forced to find expression to their political aspirations and will by resorting to armed means because of stubbornness on the part of Government of India with regard to the resolution of the Kashmir dispute.”

“Government of India should stop killings and instead resolve the internationally acknowledged Kashmir issue in accordance with internationally accepted means of dispute resolution so that precious human lives are not lost and peace and security prevails in the region,” the statement added.