30-hr long Srinagar gunfight ends, 2 militants killed: Police

Operation ended without any collateral damage, we are thankful to people of Srinagar who cooperated with us: IGP Pani

Abid Bashir
Srinagar, Publish Date: Feb 13 2018 11:20PM | Updated Date: Feb 14 2018 1:35AM
30-hr long Srinagar gunfight ends, 2 militants killed: PolicePhoto: Habib Naqash/GK

Two holed up LeT militants who tried to enter a camp of Central Reserve Police Force at Karan Nagar here on Monday morning were killed on Tuesday after a 30-hour long gunfight, police said.

Addressing a press conference here, Kashmir range inspector general of police, Swam Prakash Pani said that after being challenged by the sentry, the two Lashkar militants took shelter in a nearby building Monday morning.

“When we started searches, the hiding militants fired at the forces from the building in which we lost a CRPF constable,” he said. “The contact with the militants was established at 9:45 a.m. The operation was a delicate one as the area is congested and we had to ensure there is no collateral damage.”

He said in the ensuing gunfight two militants were killed. “The documents recovered from the possession of slain militants suggest they belonged to Lashkar. We also recovered two AK-47 rifles and ammunition from the site of encounter,” the IGP said.

He said the operation was clean and without any collateral damage. “We are thankful to the people of Srinagar who cooperated with us,” Pani said. “Civilians were evacuated to the safer places before we took on the militants.”

On the identity of the slain militants, the IGP said police are still ascertaining the identity. “As of now, their identity is not known,” he said. He said apart from the casualty of a CRPF constable Mujahid Khan of A 49 battalion, a resident of Bihar, a policeman identified as Javaid Ahmed of district police lines Srinagar suffered minor bullet injury and is being treated at SMHS hospital.

Speaking on the occasion, inspector general of CRPF (Srinagar Sector), Ravideep Sahi said the encounter took place in a congested area. “Five families of CRPF men and many locals were evacuated to safer places at the very onset. The building where the militants took shelter lies close to the 23 battalion headquarters of CRPF,” he said. “We ensured that there is no collateral damage. The firing continued intermittently during the night. There was a strong outer cordon in the area.”

He said police and CRPF men were conducting room to room searches to ensure the entire building is fully sanitized. 

The four-storey building in which the militants were hiding suffered partial damage due to the grenades and light mortar shells fired by the police and CRPF. 

The mortar shells made big holes on the walls of the house. Besides, there are marks of thousands of bullets fired by the forces, witnesses said.

The building is owned by Bashir Ahmed and Nazir Ahmed Khajwal.

On the second consecutive day, life remained paralysed in Karan Nagar area of Srinagar that remained under siege while government imposed strict curbs in Downtown areas to prevent any protest by the youth.

Nakas were set up by police and CRPF at Shaheed Gunj, Batamaloo, Nawabazar, Baba Demb, Habba Kadal, Kaka Sarai and other adjoining areas. All the shops and business establishments remained closed in Karan Nagar and its adjoining areas including majority of Downtown areas where restrictions were in place.

Police on Tuesday issued an advisory and erected a banner outside the encounter site asking people not to go closer to the area till it is cleaned off any left-over explosives. 

A banner reads, “Don’t cross the line. Site is being sanitized.”

 

Major attacks in Srinagar

 

November 3, 1999: Fidayeen attacked army corps headquarters in Badami Bagh Srinagar in which 10 army men were killed.

February 9, 2001: Police control room attacked at Batmaloo Srinagar by Lashkar-e-Tayiba fidayeen in which a policeman was killed and eight others were injured.

October 1, 2001: J&K assembly was attacked by Jaish-e-Muhammad fidayeen. Three fidayeen rammed their SUV into the assembly complex. Thirty-eight people including civilians and employees died in the attack.

April 6, 2005: A day before the bus from Srinagar to Muzaffarabad was to be flagged off, two militants attacked the Tourist Reception Centre Srinagar.

October 5, 2006: Five policemen, two CRPF men, two militants and one civilian killed in Fidayeen attack at Budshah Chowk in the heart of Srinagar.

March 31, 2013: Attack on CRPF camp at Bemina; five CRPF men and two militants were killed.

June 24, 2013: Eight army soldiers killed in attack on military convoy at Hyderpora, Srinagar.

February 22, 2016: Two fidayeen stormed into EDI building on Srinagar outskirts killing an army captain and two para commandos.

August 15, 2016: A CRPF commandant was killed in a fidayeen attack in Srinagar’s Nowhatta area, two hours before an Independence Day parade. Eight CRPF personnel and a police constable were also injured in the attack.

October 10, 2016: Two militants again took shelter in EDI building leading to an encounter. Both killed.

June 25, 2017: Two militants attacked a CRPF vehicle and then entered Delhi Public School at Pantha Chowk by-pass in Srinagar.

September 1, 2017: Policeman killed and four others injured in a militant ambush at Zewan.

October 3, 2017: Three fidayeen and a BSF ASI killed when militants stormed a BSF camp at Humhama close to Srinagar Airport.

November 17, 2017: A police sub-inspector and a militant killed in a shoot-out at Zakoora.

Feb 6, 2018: Two cops killed at SMHS hospital.