Mendhar encounter enters day 9 amid heavy gunfire

Advisory issued for people, civil services aspirants | 2 IEDs, destroyed in Nar forests
Mendhar encounter enters day 9 amid heavy gunfire
Special Arrangement

Rajouri/Mendhar, Oct 22: Heavy gun-fire took place on the ninth day of the ongoing encounter at Bhata Dhurian Nar forest area in Mendhar sub division of Poonch district on Friday.

Since Wednesday evening, no gunfire had been reported from the encounter site. However, breaking this lull prevailing for the last 40 hours, guns roared and big explosions rocked the encounter site this morning.

Meanwhile, the police here in Poonch district issued a travel advisory for people, especially for civil services aspirants in wake of closure of Highway and diversion of traffic. The police, in the advisory, asked people to adopt alternative road instead of highway between Jarran Wali Gali and Bhimber Gali.

In a related development, the army this afternoon recovered two Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) from the encounter site in Bhata Dhurian Nar forests.

These two devices were recovered by an army team during searches in Nar forest where a cordon had been in place for the last nine days and encounter was going on.

Officials said that during the search operation, two separate Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) were found by the army team in the area.

“Both these Improvised Explosive Devices were recovered and later destroyed through a controlled explosion by special team of army,” officials said.

They further said that as per preliminary reports, it was being suspected that both these IEDs were planted there by militants to trigger explosions and to inflict loss on army and police teams conducting operation.

On the other hand, heavy gunfire took place for several hours this morning at the encounter site. The forces used small and medium calibre weapons as well as heavy calibre weapons. Big explosions rattled the area in and around the encounter site.

Firing in the area lasted for several hours. However by evening, the guns fell silent.

Meanwhile, in an official statement, SSP Poonch Dr Vinod Kumar said that the candidates from district Poonch, who are scheduled to appear for civil services examination on Sunday, should adopt Poonch to Dehra Ki Gali route or Poonch to Mendhar via Harni.

“They have to follow alternate road due to the closure of highway between Jarran Wali Gali and Bhimber Gali,” SSP said. He stated that this stretch of Highway was closed due to ongoing anti militancy operation in Bhata Dhurian.

PRO Defence Lt Col Devender Anand said that the anti militancy operation was going on in the area.

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