Militants who killed J-K cop trapped by forces in Kulgam; 3 killed in encounter

Three militants who were part of group which killed a police constable in south Kashmir’s Kulgam district were killed in an encounter by security forces in Khudwani village of the district on Sunday.

The militants were trapped after a cordon-and-search operation by Army, Jammu and Kashmir Police, and CRPF in Khudwani early on Sunday morning, according to officials.

“‏Terrorists group that tortured our colleague CT Mohd Saleem of Kulgam & killed him brutally are all trapped in an encounter with J&K Police/Army/CRPF in Khudwani Kulgam,” state DGP Shesh Paul Vaid tweeted.

A police official said the search operation turned into a gun battle as the militants fired upon the forces, prompting retaliation.

Vaid said three bodies of militants have been recovered from the encounter site along with three weapons.

Army spokesman Rajesh Kalia also concurred with him, adding that the operation was still on.

Authorities have suspended mobile internet services in Kulgam and Anantnag districts as a precautionary measure.

On Saturday, militants killed police constable Mohammad Saleem Shah, a resident of Mutalhama Kulgam, after abducting him from his home the previous night.

Shah’s body was recovered from a nursery near village Redwani Payeen and bore severe torture marks, a police spokesman said.

The slain cop was the lone bread earner for his family and is survived by aged parents, two brothers and one unmarried sister, the spokesman said.

The police spokesman said that initial investigation indicated that the killing of Shah was a handiwork of the banned Hizbul Mujahideen.

Shah, who had come on leave to his home, is the 25th policeman who has been killed by the militants in Kashmir this year. Earlier this month, police constable Javaid Ahmad Dar was abducted from his house at Vehil in Shopian district and killed by militants.

Last month, Army soldier Aurangzeb was abducted from a private vehicle when he was going home for Eid in Shopian. His body was recovered from a Pulwama village.

Updated: July 22, 2018 — 2:14 pm