Imam, who joined militancy 7 days ago, killed in encounter

Imam, who joined militancy 7 days ago, killed in encounter

A militant was killed in a brief shootout with security forces at Shutloo Rafiabad in north Kashmir's Baramulla district Friday afternoon, police said.

The slain militant has been identified as Mudasir Ahmad Bhatson of Sanaullah Bhat, resident of Shutloo Rafiabad. The slain militant as perpolice had joined militant ranks just a week ago.

"Based on specific information, a joint team of Army's 32 RRand J&K Police' SOG laid an ambush in the area. As soon as militants passedthrough the area, a brief exchange of firing took place between the militantsand the security forces leading to killing of a militant," a police officialsaid.

Reports said Mudasir Ahmad Bhat was a Hafiz – one who hasmemorized the entire Quran – and a prayer-leader at a mosque in Sopore beforehe went missing a week back. He was among five youths missing from Sopore areafrom last one week.

Earlier, Sopore Police had issued a press release seekingwhereabouts of the five missing youth, including Mudasir Ahmad.

Hundreds of people on Friday evening took part in thefuneral of the militant at his native village.

Reports said that people from entire Rafiabad belt assembledat Mudasir's home and joined his funeral procession. He was laid to rest in thelocal graveyard.

(With Ghulam Muhammad in Sopore)

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