Kulgam,Oct 21,CNS: At least three militants were killed in an encounter with security forces in south Kashmir’s Kulgam district on Sunday, the police said.
The gunfight erupted at Laroo Kulgam when security forces launched a cordon and search operation following specific information about the presence of militants in the area.
“As the suspected houses were being cordoned, hiding militants opened fire around 4.15 am, triggering a gunfight. At least three militants were killed in the gunfight,” a police official said, adding the identity of the slain militants is being ascertained.
Forces also recovered arms and ammunition from the encounter site.
Authorities have also suspended mobile Internet services in Kulgam as a precautionary measure to maintain law and order.
Six civilians were critically injured in an explosion at the encounter site. Five later died of their wounds, Kulgam Deputy Commissioner Shamim Ahmed Wani said.
Police said later in a statement: “Civilians visited the encounter site immediately after operation in spite of (our) request not to visit as thorough search is to be made for explosives once flames douse. They didn’t listened and thus visited the spot immediately after forces withdrew and some explosive substance went off resulting in injuries to civilians.
Latest reports said that over 40 civilians were injured in the clashes that erupted near encounter site. Forces used live ammunition to disperse the protesting youth. An official at District Hospital Kulgam said that they received 32 injured youth among which four were referred to Srinagar. Medical Superintendent Anantnag Dr Abdul Majid Mehraab said they received 11 injured civilians among which 3 were shifted to Srinagar hospital for advanced treatment.
The slain civilians have been identified as Ubaid Laway, Mansoor Ahmed, Uzair Ahmed, Talib Maqbool, Tajamul Ahmed and Irshad Ahmed. Witnesses said that two youth died due to fire arm injuries, however, a police official denied the allegations(CNS)