June 2019 News

Jaish Militant Killed In Verinag Gunfight

8 June 2019
Greater Kashmir
Khalid Gul

Srinagar: A local Jaish-e-Muhammad militant was killed in a brief gunfight with security forces in Verinag area of Anantnag district, while two 'foreign militants' are believed to have escaped. The deceased militant identified as Iqbal Ahmad, 36, a resident of Nowpora, Dooru, was associated with Harkat-ul-Mujahideen militant outfit in the early 2000s but had been arrested later. He, however, joined the Jaish in April last year. A police official said early in the morning Army's 19RR and SOG of Jammu and Kashmir Police launched a cordon and search operation in Nowgam forests of Verinag following inputs about the presence of the militants there. 'A group of militants after being spotted were challenged but they opened fire which was retaliated. A militant was killed in the brief exchange of fire,' he said. Two other militants, believed to be Pakistani nationals, according to an official, managed to escape deep into the woods. 'A massive search operation was launched to nab them. The choppers were also pressed into service. However the militants remained untraced,' a police official said. The operation which lasted till 2pm was finally called off. As the word about Iqbal's killing spread in Dooru, people came out and clashed with security forces. Protests and clashes continued throughout the day in Dooru, Nowpora, Kreeri, Larkipora, and Verinag. The forces fired tear shells, chilli grenades and shotgun pellets into protesters, injuring a few of them. Meanwhile, mobile Internet was suspended in Anantnag district following the gunfight. The body of Iqbal was taken to police post Verinag and later handed over to the family for last rites. People in large numbers turned up at his funeral in Nowpora village.