10 militants killed, soldier injured in two gunfights in Kashmir (Fourth Lead)

Srinagar, Sep 20 (IANS) Ten infiltrating militants were killed and an army soldier critically injured in two gunfights in north Kashmir’s Baramulla and Kupwara districts on Tuesday.

Defence sources said 10 infiltrating militants were killed in an ongoing operation on the Line of Control (LoC) in Lachipora area in Uri sector where a group of 15 heavily armed militants tried to enter the Indian side, during a ceasefire violation by the Pakistan Army.

“Lachipora operation against the infiltrating terrorists is still on,” a defence source said.

The area on the LoC where the infiltrating militants were challenged by the army is barely six km from the army camp that was attacked by four suicide guerrillas on Sunday morning in the garrison town of Uri.

Eighteen soldiers were killed and 30 others injured in the Uri attack. All the four fidayeen attackers were also killed.

In the other operation, a group of heavily armed militants was challenged by the security forces in Nowgam area of Kupwara district near the LoC, police sources said.

“When challenged, the group of heavily armed militants fired at the security forces, triggering an encounter in which one army soldier was critically injured.

“The encounter is still going on in the area. There are five to six militants engaged in the encounter by the security forces in Nowgam area,” a police source said.

The latest infiltration bid comes as New Delhi and Islamabad are locked in a bitter diplomatic war of words following the Uri terror attack, which India has blamed on militants from Pakistan.

Pakistan has denied the allegations even as India claimed to have clinching evidence to support its claims.

The Indian Army has said it has recovered arms, ammunition and food and medicine packets with Pakistani markings during the combing operations at the military base in Uri.

India also claimed that the four attackers gunned down during the two-and-half hours of gunfight were foreigners.

According to the Indian Army, infiltration attempts from across the border with Pakistan have increased this year in comparison with the past three to four years.

In 2016 so far, the Indian Army has foiled n 18 infiltration bids from across the border.

Some 110 militants were killed and 31 of them were gunned down near the LoC.

The army said it was a “desperate attempt” by Pakistan to create “disturbance and foment unrest” in India.

–IANS

sq-sar/rn/vt

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