Shopian military Op: Police says house owner ‘misled’ armed forces, booked

People gather outside a damaged house in which a military operation took place in Chermarg village of Zainapora Shopian. The operation ended with the killing of two armed forces personnel and a militant on February 19, 2022. [FPK Photo/ Mukhtar Zahoor]

‘The house owner has been arrested and booked under anti-militancy law’

Shopian: A militant and two armed forces personnel were killed in a military operation in Chermarg village of Zainapora area in south Kashmir’s Shopian district, officials said on Saturday.

A senior police officer said that an unidentified militant has been killed, whose identification is being ascertained while as two armed forces personnel were injured during the exchange of fire, who were later shifted to 92 base hospital Srinagar, where both succumbed to their injuries.

He identified them as Santosh Yaadev and Romit Chauhan of the Indian army’s first Rashtriya Rifles.

Earlier, an official said that a joint team of police, army and CRPF launched a Cordon and Search Operation (CASO) on specific information about the presence of militants in the area.

He said that as the joint team of forces approached the suspected spot, the hiding militants fired upon them triggering the operation.

Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Kashmir range, Vijay Kumar said that based on a specific input provided by Police, a joint operation was launched in Chermarg, Shopian by the army and police during the intervening night of 18/19 February 2022.

“Following the drill, a cluster of houses were taken into cordon and the process of evacuating the civilians started. During the process, when search party reached one of the houses belonging to Gowhar Ahmad Bhat. The house owner intentionally misled the search party and denied sheltering the militant in his house,” the IGP said.

He said, “While he was being questioned, a militant sheltered in the house opened fire on the search party causing grievous injuries to two of the forces personnel. In the retaliatory action, one militant of LeT outfit namely Abdul Qayoom Dar, a resident of  Laroo Kakpora Pulwama was killed and arms and ammunitions including one AK rifle and a pistol were recovered.”

“Later on, both the injured armed forces personnel succumbed to their injuries,” he said.

He said that a case has been registered and the house owner has been arrested under anti-militancy law.

“Killed militant has a history of the militant association. In April 2020, an operation took place in his house. He was arrested and booked under PSA.,” the IGP said.

He added, “the militant was released in August 2021 but kept silently working for militants. SSP Pulwama officially intimated some days earlier that he had left the house and joined as an active militant of LeT outfit. Consequently, he has been categorized as C category militant.”


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