3 ultras lay down arms in Poonch
17 October 2003
The Daily Excelsior
Daily Excelsior Correspondent
Jammu: Three Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) militants including a ‘commander’ today surrendered before Army and police in Surankote while an Army jawan and a civilian were killed and two others were injured in separate incidents in Jammu region overnight. Official sources said three Lashkar militants laid down arms before troops of Rashtriya Rifles and police officials in Surankote in Poonch district this morning, giving a big setback to Pakistan backed outfit. They have been identified as Nazir Ahmed son of Nazir Hussain, an ‘area commander’ of LeT, Basharat Hussain son of Shamas Din and Liaquat Ali son of Noor Mohd, all residents of Marhot, Surankote. They handed over three AK-47 rifles, 12 magazines, one wireless set, three hand grenades, three pouches and 360 AK rounds at the time of surrender. The surrender of three LeT militants including a ‘commander’ was a big jolt to the outfit in Surankote belt, the sources said. They point out that during last one and a half months more than a dozen militants of different outfits have laid down their arms and ammunition in militancy-infested Surankote. Noor Mohd had joined militancy in 2000 while Basharat had entered the militant ranks in 2001. Nazir Hussain became an active LeT militant in January 2002. Trio were trained in Pakistan and were involved in a series of militant activities in Surankote tehsil. Meanwhile, an encounter took place between the troops of 8 Rashtriya Rifles and a group of militants in Marmat area of Doda district this morning. Exchange of firing between the two sides continued for about one hour in which a civilian was killed and his son was injured. An army jawan Suresh Kumar also sustained injuries. Killed civilian has been identified as Ishtaq Wani son of Chura Wani and his injured son as Arif Wani, residents of Marmat. Injured Army jawan has been airlifted to Military Hospital in Udhampur while injured boy has been admitted in a local hospital. Militants managed to escape during the gun-battle and are being searched by the troops, the sources said. An army jawan was killed in continued mortar shelling by Pakistan army at Sabjian in Nowshera sector in Rajouri today. Shelling also took place at Bhawani and Kalsian in Nowshera and Kerni, Shahpur, Digwar, Gulpur and Salwa in Poonch sector. Meanwhile, army today defused a five kg IED at Darshpora, Banihal at 191 kilometer milestone on Jammu-Srinagar national highway this morning, averting a tragedy. Traffic on the highway remained affected for about an hour till the IED was defused.