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Awantipora gunfight: Slain trio buried in Sonmarg to avoid gatherings

File Photo: KM/Umar Ganie

Srinagar: Two militants and their “associate” were killed in an encounter with the security forces in Goripora area of Awantipora in south Kashmir’s Pulwama district on Saturday, police said.

Inspector General of Police, Kashmir Vijay Kumar said that two militants and the “hardcore associate” were killed in the gunfight.

 

The encounter had ensued after joint team of Army’s 50 RR, SOG and CRPF launched a cordon-and-search operation in Goripora in the early hours of Saturday amid specific information about the presence of some militants there. The identity of the slain militants is yet to be ascertained, the IGP said.

The trio was buried at Sonmarg area of Ganderbal district.

Meanwhile, a senior police officer said that huge gatherings have been observed during funeral and burial of militants killed at Arwani, DH Pora and Sopore during the lockdown period.

Heath authorities have taken note of the issue seriously “as there were genuine apprehensions of mass transmissions of coronavirus during such gatherings,” the officer said, adding, “It has also been learnt that a few militants have been affected by the virus.”

The officer said that in order to ensure health security of the people at large, the administration has decided to conduct burial of militants at isolated places. The administration have been following a proper procedure for such burials such as conducting of Post Mortem and lifting DNA samples of killed militants prior to their burial in accordance with the religious customs, he said.

Families who identify and claim the bodies of the slain militants are being provided passes by concerned DCs in order to facilitate their presence at the last rites in the presence of magistrates.

The procedure was followed at Ganderbal where the respective families participated in the last rites of three killed militants.

Unidentified militants are also being buried in accordance with the religious customs in the presence of magistrates, he said.

“Allowing funerals at the native places of killed militants would lead to the breakdown of the strict protocols of lockdown thereby endangering the health and well-being of the community at large,” he added.

With these killing, the number of militants killed in April this year alone has gone up to 22 and the overall count in 2020 to 54. (GNS)