Srinagar, Dec 30: Six Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) militants, including two Pakistani nationals involved in the December 13 attack on a police bus on the outskirts of the city, were killed in twin encounters in south Kashmir that also left an Army jawan dead, officials said on Thursday. While three militants were killed in an overnight encounter in Anantnag, three others were killed in the gunfight which took place in Kulgam district of Jammu and Kashmir on Wednesday evening, the officials said.
Two jawans and a police personnel were injured during the Anantnag operation, they said.
The encounters took place after the forces launched cordon and search operations in Nowgam Shahabad area in Anantnag district, and Mirhama area of Kulgam both in south Kashmir after specific inputs about the presence of militants in these areas on Wednesday evening.
In the last about five days, security forces have carried out multiple operations across the valley resulting in 11 hardcore terrorists being neutralised, killed. On Wednesday night, in two separate operations, six terrorists, including two Pakistani terrorists, of JeM cadre have been neutralised in Kulgam and Anantnag, General officer Commanding of the Army's 15 Corps, Lt Gen D P Pandey said.
He was addressing a joint press conference along with Inspector General of Police (IGP) Kashmir, Vijay Kumar, at Qazigund in south Kashmir's Anantnag district.
The GoC said during the operation, Sepoy Jasbir Singh lost his life.
As the operation was being conducted in very heavily built up area, while evacuating civilians from harm's way, we had two Army personnel and one JKP personnel suffering gunshot wounds. They are all stable as of now, he said.
The IGP Kashmir said the JeM group was involved in the December 13 attack on a police bus in Zewan area on the outskirts of the city here in which three policemen were killed.
After the Zewan attack, I had shared with you that JeM carried out the attack. Security forces personnel will be happy to know that this is the same group which carried out the attack in which three policemen were martyred, he said.
Kumar identified the three militants behind the attack as Suhail Ahmad Rather, resident of Zaffran Colony, Peer Altaf Hussain alias Mufti Altaf, resident of Nathipora Dooru, and a Pakistani national Sultan, alias Rayees.
Rayees was active in south Kashmir since 2017. His aim was to inflict heavy casualty on the forces. Although, our forces had retaliated heavily (in Zewan), but still three were martyred. We had promised to neutralise this group before the end of the year, Kumar said.
He said so far this month, 24 terrorists, including five Pakistani nationals, have been killed.
Two US-made M-4 Carbine rifles, 15 AK-47, two dozen pistols and some grenade and IEDs have been recovered. This proves that Pakistan wants to foment trouble here, he said.
The IGP said security forces have delivered a huge setback to JeM this year by killing its number one and number two.
However, he said, the outfit is still planning attacks on forces and there is a danger of IED blasts .
But, police and security forces are on alert. Our intelligence network is fully alert and we will give a befitting reply to it, he added.
He said if Pakistan claims the bodies of the foreign JeM militants, police is ready to give back the bodies .