Srinagar: The bodies of Riyaz Naikoo, operational commander of Hizbul Mujahideen, and two other militants who were killed in a gunfight in Pulwama district on Wednesday, will not be handed over to their families.
The bodies instead were buried at an ‘undisclosed location’.
News Agency GNS reported that the body of Naikoo was buried in Sonmarg in Ganderal district, along with 2 other militants, killed in a gunfight.
Naikoo was killed in a gun battle with Indian armed forces, who used heavy gunfire which resulted in three houses being completely damaged.
As per GNS, the two other militants, identified as Adil Manzoor Wani of Padgam Pora and Rafiq Ahmad Dar of Kerinibal Samboora, killed in a gunfight at Sharshali Khrew, Pulwama, were buried in presence of Magistrate at Sonamarg, Ganderbal.
The decision, officials said, was taken to “stop glorification and big funeral processions of terrorists”.
Naikoo was killed after being trapped in a village in South Kashmir as the armed forces launched three operations in different areas of the district, officials said on Wednesday.
He carried a reward on his head and his killing is considered a big blow to Hizbul’s operations in the Valley.
Naikoo was considered a stealth master, and gave the armed forces a tough time, successfully carrying out a series of attacks in the last few years.
He was working under the code name Mohammad Bin Qasim and became the operational chief commander of the Hizb after successor of Burhan Wani, Mohammad Yasin Itoo alias Mehmood Ghaznavi, was killed in August 2017.
He figured in the list of 12 most militants issued by the army in 2017.
In 2018, Naikoo-led Hizb militants held 11 family members of policemen hostage, demanding the police to release Naikoo’s father, Asadullah Naikoo from their custody. The police had picked Asadullah from his Awantipora residence in South Kashmir after militants had killed four policemen in Shopian.
Later, in an audio message, Riyaz had warned the police of “dangerous consequences” if relatives of militants were harassed.
The multiple location operation against Naikoo, was launched on Tuesday night on a specific input.
At least ten civilians were injured in clashes with armed forces near the gunfight site in Pulwama, after Hizb commander Riyaz Naikoo was killed in a gun battle.
Most of those injured in Pulwama have pellet wounds, and at least two gunshot wounds are reported.
Medical superintendent of District Hospital, Pulwama, Dr Mir Mushtaq said that 16 injured were received at the hospital.
“Four of them had bullet wounds while remaining pellet injuries,” he said, adding, “all of them were shifted to Srinagar’s SMHS hospital for specialized treatment.”
Medical Superintendent SMHS hospital Dr Nazir Choudhary also said that 16 persons, four of them having bullet and other pellet wounds, were received and admitted to the hospital.
Nine more people have been admitted to nearby hospitals or were discharged after treatment, they added.
Some police and paramilitary forces also suffered injuries in the clashes but exact number was not revealed by the official sources.
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