SRINAGAR: Two Army jawans were today killed in separate encounters in south Kashmir in which eight militants, including “top commanders”, were also gunned down, police said.
Two civilians were also killed and dozens of others injured in clashes that broke out between protestors and security forces following three separate encounters in several parts of the region.
The police said that an ultra had also surrendered before the security forces in Anantnag district.
Security forces launched anti-militancy operations last night at three places simultaneously in south Kashmir following information about the presence of large number of militants there, a police official said.
He said the militants had assembled at these places to hold meetings about their plan to carry out subversive activities, including targeting security personnel and political workers.
While one militant was killed and another surrendered before the forces at Dialgam in Anantnag district, seven ultras were killed in a gunbattle at Draggad in Shopian district, the official said.
He said that another gunbattle took place at Kachdooru Shopian and two Army jawans were killed in the encounter.
Director General of Jammu and Kashmir Police (DGP) S P Vaid confirmed the killing of eight militants.
“One terrorist killed in Dialgam Anantnag after efforts of his family/ J&K Police failed to surrender, one caught alive. In Draggad Shopian 7 (seven) bodies of terrorists recovered including top commanders,” he said on Twitter.
The third encounter was on in Kachdoora area of Shopian where some civilians were trapped, Vaid said.
“Encounter also going on in Kachdoora Shopian, some civilian trapped efforts to rescue them on,” the DGP said.
Clashes between protestors and security forces broke out soon after the news of militant killings spread in several parts of south Kashmir.
The protestors at Draggad and Kachdoora hurled stones at the security forces who responded by opening firing, the official said.
He said two civilians have died so far while dozens others were injured.
Several of the injured were taken to hospitals here. One of the injured persons condition is stated to be critical, the official said.
Reports of clashes have been received from other parts of south Kashmir and some parts in the city as well.
Authorities have deployed police and paramilitary personnel in strength in the city for maintaining law and order.
A police official, while giving details of the operations, said security forces had launched a search operation and cordoned the Draggad area of Shopian this morning following specific input regarding presence of militants in the area.
He said as the searches were being conducted, the militants fired on the forces, which led to an encounter.
In the ensuing gunfight, seven militants were killed, the official said, adding that identity and group affiliation of the slain militants is being ascertained.
The operation is on and further details are awaited, the official said.
Earlier this morning, a militant was killed while another surrendered before forces in Anantnag, the official said.
Based on specific input, security forces launched a cordon and search operation in Peth Dialgam area of Anantnag in the early hours, he said.
The official said that the militants were detected and security forces made repeated requests on loud speakers asking them to surrender, as per the standard operating procedure.
On this, the official said, one of the militants (name withheld) came out of a house and surrendered.
He has been taken into custody, the official said, adding, his family also helped the police in motivating him to come out of the house and surrender.
The other militant did not surrender and instead resorted to firing on forces which was retaliated and in which he was killed, he said.
The slain militant was identified as Rouf Khanday, the official said, adding he had gone missing early this year and a photograph of him holding a gun was posted on social media in the last week of March.
His body has been handed over to the family for last rites.
Both militants were part of the outlawed militant organisation Hizbul Mujahideen, the official said. (agencies)