Militants, forces exchange fire in Shopian

Militants and security forces exchanged fire in a forest in this south Kashmir district on Tuesday afternoon.

While there were no reports of any casualty, the searches in the area were going on.

A police official told Greater Kashmir that at around 2 pm, a joint team of Army, SOG and CRPF personnel threw a cordon around the Yarwan (Seer Khal) forest, about 15km from Shopian, following inputs about the presence of militants in the area.  “As the forces were conducting searches, some militants hiding in the area opened fire on them,” the official said, adding that the fire was immediately returned, leading to a brief shootout.

He said there were no immediate reports of any causality from the either side.

The official, however, said that more reinforcements were rushed to the area and the cordon was tightened.

The search operation in the area was in progress at the time of filing this report.

Meanwhile, another police officer said that some young men in Barthipora and Kral Check villages of the district hit the streets and threw stones on the police vehicles that were on their way to the gun battle site.

The forces responded by firing tear smoke shells and pellets, he said.