Srinagar, Dec 13: Two Lashkar-e-Taiba militants were Thursday killed an encounter that broke out on Wednesday evening after a search operation was launched in Brath Kalan area of Sopore in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district.
Police said that a joint operation was launched by police and government forces on Wednesday during which the militants, who were hiding in the area, fired upon the search party, which was retaliated, thus leading to a gunfight.
“In the ensuing encounter, two militants were killed and the bodies were retrieved from the site of encounter,” police said while identifying the slain militants as Owais Ahmad Bhat alias Abu Bakar, son of Ghulam Ahmad Bhat of Gund Brath Sopore and Tahir Ahmad Dar alias Abu Abdullah, son of Mohammad Ramzan Dar of Saidpora Sopore.
Police spokesman confirmed that the duo killed in the gunfight was affiliated with LeT.
“Huge quantity of arms and ammunition including rifles were recovered from the site of encounter. All these materials have been taken in the case records for further investigation and probe their complicity in other cases,” police said.
Police urged people not to venture inside the encounter zone since such an area can prove dangerous due to stray explosive materials. “People are requested to cooperate with police till the area is completely sanitized and cleared of all the explosives materials if any,” police said.
Later, the funeral prayers of slain militants witnessed a huge gathering of people in Sopore area.
Locals said that people from different parts of Sopore visited the residences of slain militants and participated in their funeral prayers. The duo was later laid to rest at their ancestral graveyard in Brath Village and Shadipora area of Sopore town.
A spontaneous shutdown was observed in the town following the killing of the two militants.
All the shops and business establishments are closed while as traffic is off the roads.
Reports said that clashes also erupted in many parts of Sopore town during the day.
An eye witness said that the youth hurled stones on the forces withdrawing from the Brath Gund area soon after the gunfight ended.
The forces, he said, fired tear gas shells to chase away the protesters.
The internet services continued to remain suspended across Sopore.
The services were suspended following the encounter on Wednesday evening, locals said, adding that the services continued to remain closed since then.