Terrorists killed in separate encounters in J&K constructed sophisticated hideouts: officials

Srinagar, July 8 (UNI) A day after six militants of banned Hizbul Mujahideen were killed in separate encounters in Kulgam district of Jammu and Kashmir, senior security officials on Monday said the terrorists had constructed sophisticated hideouts.

Security officials said the killing of six militants at Chinigam and Modergam villages in Kulgam district, has dealt a serious blow to the Hizbul Mujahideen.

Two soldiers identified as Para commando Pradeep Kumar Nain, from Jind district of Haryana, and Prabhakar Praveen, from Akola district in Maharashtra were also killed in these twin encounters.

Addressing a joint press conference, Deputy Inspector General of Police, South Kashmir Javed Mattoo said at both places where the encounters broke out, the terrorists had constructed sophisticated hideouts.

“In Modergam, the hideout was inside the house of Yawar Ali Dar and the terrorists had been using it for the last several months. The same way in Chinigam a hideout was constructed inside the house of Mushtaq Ahmed Bhat, who is himself a mason. It was a concrete and sophisticated hideout,” Mattoo said.

While the police officer didn’t divulge more details, officials said the hideout in Chinigam was concealed inside a cupboard.

The DIG said all the six killed in the two encounters belonged to Hizbul Mujahideen and were wanted in several cases.

The two militants killed in the Modergam encounter were identified as Adil Hussain Wani, an “ A” category militant who was active from 2021 and Faisal Bashir who joined recently.

In Chinigam Frisal, the slain HM militants were identified as Yawar Bashir Dar, Tauheed Ahmed Rather, Shakeel Ahmed Wani and Zahid Ahmed Dar.

Brigadier Pritivi Raj, Commander of the Army’s 1 sector Rashtriya Rifles while briefing the media about the Chinigam operation said they had input about the moment of terrorists for a long time.

“On July 6, a specific information was received about the moment of terrorists. By 3 pm a cordon and search operation was laid and at around 4 pm a group of four Pheran wearing men were seen moving in a suspicious condition. On being challenged, they opened indiscriminate firing and we retaliated. In this initial firing we lost our brave soldier (Prabhakar Praveen). In the 24-hour long operation, four terrorists were killed,” Brigadier Raj said.

He said during the search operation, a six kilo IED was recovered and it was destroyed.

Brigadier Anirudh Chauhan of Army’s 2 sector RR while briefing about Modergam operation said from the last two months this group of HM terrorists that used to operate on the border of Shopian and Kulgam was being tracked.

“ We got a massive achievement when we got an input on the morning of July 6 that this group was hiding in a house in Modergam. Immediately, Indian Army’s 9 RR, 1 and 7 Para SF, J&K police and 118 CRPF battalion launched a joint operation ….. The target house was cordoned tactfully and no opportunity was given to terrorists for escape. All the civilians were evacuated and at around 2 pm whenever jawans were searching this house the terrorists from inside the hideout opened indiscriminate firing. It was retaliated and the terrorists were pinned down..

The operation continued for more than 24 hours and two terrorists of Hizbul Mujahideen including a top commander of the group were gunned down,” Brigadier Chauhan said.

“The killing of six Hizb terrorists in twin operations and recovery of a large cache of arms and ammunition is a big setback for the group,” he said, adding “it will be difficult for Hizb to come out of this setback.”

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