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Two LeT militants, civilian killed in Kulgam gunfight

Srinagar, Jun 24: Two militants and civilian were killed during a gunfight and subsequent clashes with the government forces in Chidder village of Qaimoh tehsil in south Kashmir’s Kulgam district.
Reports said that army, SOG of Jammu and Kashmir Police and the CRPF launched a search operation in the area following “specific’ inputs about the presence of militants.
As soon as the forces approached the suspected spot, the militants hiding in a residential house opened fire on them. The forces retaliated, triggering a gunfight.
“In the encounter, the two militants hiding inside the house were killed. On the basis of the materials recovered it is understood that one of the killed militants is Shakoor Dar, the divisional commander of LeT while the second one was a Pakistani known as Haider,” a police spokesman said.
He added that one local militant, whose identity, as per the spokesman, was being protected, “surrendered” at the encounter site.
“The authorities and security forces strictly followed SOP while conducting the operation. This militant is in the custody of police,” the spokesman said.
Meanwhile, massive clashes broke out between the government forces and protesters near the site of the gunfight.
Reports said that youth took to streets and clashed with the forces deployed in the area to disrupt the anti-militant operation.
The forces responded by firing tear gas, triggering further clashes in which many were injured.
A civilian, Yawar Ahmad of Gassipora village, suffered a bullet injury in his chest during clashes near the site of gunfight in Chidder village of Qaimoh area.
He was shifted to a hospital where doctors declared him dead on arrival.
Meanwhile, internet services were suspended in Kulgam and Anantnag districts following the gunfight.
Local sources said that internet services were snapped soon after the encounter broke out in the area.
Briefing about the encounter, the police spokesman said that Shakoor Ahmad Dar son of Munawar Dar resident of Sopat Tengpora was operating as divisional commander of militant outfit LeT.
“Several cases were registered against Shakoor in different police stations of South Kashmir. Incriminating materials & huge quantity of ammunition were also seized from the site of encounter. Police has registered a case in this regard and has initiated investigation in the instant matter,” the spokesman said.