The five terrorists killed in two separate encounters with the security forces at Pombay and Gopalpora in South Kashmir’s Kulgam district have been identified, and one of them was a commander of a proscribed terror outfit, police said on Thursday.
The five were killed in the security operations on Wednesday.
The police said acting on specific inputs generated by the Kulgam police about the presence of terrorists in the twin villages of the district, two anti-terrorist operations were carried out in which five were eliminated.
The killed terrorists included the commander of proscribed terror outfit, The Resistance Front (TRF), Aafaq Sikander, police said.
“During both the operations, ample opportunities were given to the trapped terrorists to surrender, however, they fired indiscriminately on the search teams which retaliated leading to the encounters,” police said.
In the ensuing encounter at Gopalpora, two terrorists were killed and their bodies were recovered from the site.
They have been identified as Aafaq Sikander Lone (District commander TRF), son of Mohammad Sikander Lone, resident of Raykapran Shopian, and Irfan Mushtaq Lone, son of Mushtaq Ahmad, Lone resident of Shedcheck Aawneera, Shopian. One AK-47 rifle and one pistol were recovered.
Police said as per the records, Aafaq Sikendar was involved in many terror crime cases, including in civilian atrocities and attacks on the security forces.
“He was involved in the killing of police personnel Nissar Ahmad Wagay on 07/08/2021 at Pambay Crossing, killing of non-local labour Shankar Kumar Choudhary at Nehama Kulgam on 17/09/2021. Besides, he was also involved in grenade attacks on security forces, including the attack on 18Bn CRPF at Nehama. He also carried out an attack on SHO Manzgam in which four police personnel got injured,” police said.
“Similarly in the encounter at Pambay, three terrorists were killed and their bodies were retrieved from the site of encounter. Two of them have been identified as Shakir Najar, Dy District Commander Hizbul Mujahideen (HM), a resident of Ponipora Kulgam, and Sumair Najar, a resident of Kanipora Shopian. They were affiliated with proscribed terror outfit HM and TRF respectively.
“While the identification and affiliation of the third killed terrorist is being ascertained. As per source, the third terrorist might be Aslam Dar District, Commander of the HM. However, exact identification will be established after matching the DNA samples. The killed terrorists were involved in various terror crime cases, including civilian atrocities. Pertinently terrorist Shakir Najar was active since April 2018.”
Incriminating material, including arms and ammunition (two AK-47 rifles and one pistol) were recovered from both the sites of encounters. All the recovered materials have been taken into case records for further investigation.
Police have registered cases in both the incidents under relevant sections of the law in respective police stations and further investigation is in progress.