3 militants killed in ongoing Baramulla encounter

5 security personnel injured
3 militants killed in ongoing Baramulla encounter
Military personnel near the gunfight site in north Kashmir's Baramulla. Mubashir Khan for Greater Kashmir

Srinagar: One of the most wanted Lashker-e-Toiba commanders is among the three militants who were killed in an ongoing encounter in Baramulla district of north Kashmir on Thursday. Five security forces personnel including an officer have been injured in the operation, Police said.

LeT commander Yousuf Kantroo who was amongst the list of top 10 most wanted militants was among three militants killed in an encounter at Malwah area of Baramulla, Inspector General of Police, Kashmir Zone Vijay Kumar said and termed the operation “a big success.”

“BaramullaEncounterUpdate: So far, 3 militants have been killed.Operation going on. Further details shall follow,” Police said in a Tweet.

The encounter broke out at Malwah Kunzer area of Baramulla on Thursday morning after Budgam, Baramulla Police and 62 RR cordoned off the area to trace the militants. Police said that still at least three militants are trapped inside and intermittent firing between two sides is going on.

“Encounter has started at Pariswani area of Baramulla. BudgamPolice and Army on job. Further details shall follow.@JmuKmrPolice,” Kashmir Zone Police Tweeted on Thursday early morning.

In another Tweet police said three soldiers received minor injuries. “BaramullaEncounterUpdate: Exact location of encounter is Malwah area. In the initial exchange of fire, 3 soldiers recieved minor injuries. Operation in progress. Further details shall follow: IGP Kashmir@JmuKmrPolice,” police said in another Tweet.

“BaramullaEncounterUpdate: 1 terrorist of proscribed terror outfit LeT killed. Incriminating materials including arms & ammunition recovered. Operation in progress. @JmuKmrPolice,” Police said in another Tweet later.

IGP Kashmir Vijay Kumar said in the Baramulla encounter, LeT commander Yousuf Kantroo was killed and he was involved in various terror related incidents. “Top LeT terrorist Commander Yousuf Kantroo killed in Baramulla encounter. He was involved in several killings of civilians & SFs personnel including recent killing of JKP’s SPO & his brother, one Soldier and one civilian in #Budgam district. A big success for us: IGP Kashmir,” Kumar was quoted as saying by police.

“BaramullaEncounterUpdate: 2nd terrorist also killed. Ops in progress. LeT cmdr Yousuf Kantroo had killed BDC Chairman Late Sardar Bhupinder Singh on 23/9/20 in his own native place in Khag area. Case FIR No 79/20 was registered against terrorist Kantroo in PS Khag: IGP Kashmir,” Police said in another Tweet.

“Police alongwith Army achieved a major success by neutralising 2 terrorists including a dreaded terrorist of proscribed terror outfit LeT Yousuf Kantroo who was amongst the list of top 10 most wanted terrorists, in an encounter at Malwah area of Baramulla,” Police said.

“Acting on specific information generated by Budgam police, a special team of Budgam Police alongwith Army ( 62 RR) launched a joint cordon & search operation in Malwah area of Baramulla. During the search operation as the joint search party reached the suspected spot, the hiding terrorists fired indiscriminately upon them in which four soldiers including one officer received minor injuries,” police said. “The fire was effectively retaliated leading to an encounter. Later on Baramulla police headed by SSP Baramulla also joined in operation. One policeman from Baramulla district also got injured in encounter who was later on shifted to Army’s base hospital in Srinagar.”

In the ensuing encounter, Police said: “ So far 2 terrorists of proscribed terror outfit LeT including a dreaded terrorist commander Yousuf Kantroo , one of longest surviving terrorist, were killed and their bodies were retrieved from the site of encounter,” Police said. “Terrorist Yousuf Kantroo earlier joined as an OGW of HM outfit and was arrested in the year 2005. Later on released in the year 2008. Again he joined terrorist rank in the year 2017 and started killing of innocent civilians, policemen and political workers. Later on he switched from HM to LeT outfit. However, the identification of the other killed terrorist is being ascertained.”

As per police records police said: “The killed terrorists were categorised terrorists and part of groups involved in several terror crime cases including attacks on Police/SFs and civilian atrocities.”

“Pertinently, terrorist Yousuf Kantroo was involved in dozens of civilian atrocities & SFs personnel killings including killing of SPO Mohd Ishfaq Dar and his brother Umer Ahmad Dar resident of Chatabugh Budgam on 26/03/2022, killing of BDC Chairman Late Sardar Bhupinder Singh on 23/9/20 in his own native place in Khag, killing of NC Block president at Natipora Chanapora Srinagar, killing of Tajamul Mohidin Dar resident of Guttapora Budgam on 21/03/2022, killing of Gulzar Ahmad of Lawaypora at Narbal, killing of Tanveer Zargar of Chewa at Narbal, killing of Nazir Ahmad Dar (an employee of Health department) resident of Warihama at Warihama, killing of Sarpanch Manzoor Ahmad of Pattan.

Besides, he was also involved in grenade throwing incidents, abduction and killing of police and SF personnel including killing of CRPF personnel HC Riyaz Ahmad Rather resident of Nawgam Anantnag at Kanihama by lobbing grenade on deployment on 23/12/2017, abduction and killing of constable Mohd Ashraf Rather @Ishfaq resident of Archanderhama Magam, abduction and killing of Army Personnel Mohd Sameer Malla resident of Lokipora Khag on 07/03/2022, killing of SPO Mohd Altaf during an encounter at Peth-Zanigam, killing of one Ex-SPO Naseer Ahmad Khan resident of Buchipora Kawoosa Khalisa.

Moreover, he was also involved in snatching 4 AK rifles from the residence of Legislature Muzafar Parray at J-13 Jawahar Nagar Rajbagh. Furthermore, on his directions Abrar Nadeem (neutralised terrorist) carried out an attack on CRPF at Lawaypora Srinagar in which 3 CRPF personnel attained martyrdom on 25/03/2021.” In addition to this, police said: “The killed terrorist was also involved in recruiting innocent/gullible youth into terror folds including recruitment of Faisal Hafeez Dar of Aaripanth Magam into terrorist ranks.”

Meanwhile, police said: “While commenting on a video which went viral on social media, in which mother of a trapped terrorist while mourning is heard saying, "come back my son, you are so young, these old terrorists have deceived you, they are pickpockets and goons”, IGP Kashmir yet again appealed parents of other terrorists to plead their wards to shun the path of violence,” police said. “He congratulated the joint team of forces for conducting successful anti-terrorist operation by eliminating the top most wanted terrorist Yousuf Kantroo.”

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