2 Militants Killed In Handwara, Anantnag
5 August 2007
The Daily Excelsior
Srinagar: While Police and security forces today claimed to have killed two militants in separate gunbattles in Handwara and Anantnag areas, nine civilians sustained injuries in a grenade explosion on the highway township of Awantipora in Pulwama district. Informed sources said that Police and troops of Rashtriya Rifles 6 Bn launched a cordon-and-search operation at Pazipora Chak in Vilgam area of Handwara after receiving information regarding the presence of two militants at a hideout. During the search operation, an encounter took place between the holed up militants and security forces in which one militant got killed and another was believed to have escaped from the cordoned area. Officials said that the militant killed in the gunbattle was later identified as Abu Talib alias Usama. They said that he was a Pakistani member of Lashkar-e-Toiba. Sources said that on yet another specific information, Anantnag Police swooped on a militant hideout at Brakpora in the outskirts of the district headquarters today. During the search operation, an encounter took place between one-odd militant and Police. The militant was killed in the brief encounter. He was later identified as Shaukat Ahmed alias Jannisaar R-o Sarnal, Anantnag. Officials described him as a local cadre of Hizbul Mujahideen and said that he had been recycled after his arrest and subsequent release from a jail. Sources said that an unidentified person lobbed a hand grenade at a crowded market place in the highway township of Awantipore at 0915 hours today. Even as many vehicles were in movement on the highway, it was not clear as to what exactly was the target. Sources said that the grenade exploded on the road, causing splinter injuries to nine persons-all civilians. While four of them were treated at a local hospital and later discharged, five persons with grave injuries were rushed to two different hospitals and were provided medical treatment. Officials identified the injured as Sheeraz Ahmad Wani S-o Ghulam Ahmad Wani R-o Beighpora, Javid Ahmad Bhat S-o Mushtaq Ahmad Bhat R-o Lethpora, Ashiq Hussain Rather S-o Ghulam Nabi Rather R-o Pastuna-Tral, Ghulam Hassan Sheikh, son-in- law of Ramzan R-o Chursoo, Manzoor Ahmad (Bakerwal) S-o Maqsood R-o Kathua, presently at Noorpora-Tral, Ali Mohammad Wani S-o Bahadur Wani R-o Padgampora, Ghulam Mohammad Bhat S-o Reshi Bhat R-o Padgampora, Ghulam Rasool Bhat S-o Sultan Bhat R-o Padgampora and Ghulam Mohiuddin Sheikh S-o Sultan Sheikh R-o Takya Bagh Midoora- Tral. Sources said that suspected militants lobbed a hand grenade towards a formation of CRPF 178 Bn at Mohalla Sheikh Sahib in Sopore late last night. It missed the intended target and exploded on the road, without causing harm to the paramilitaries targeted. Sources said that suspected militants threw a grenade on the vehicle of SHO Harwan in Harwan area late last evening. It went off close to the intended target but failed to cause any damage.