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Monday, August 2, 2021

Lashkar commander who was in most wanted list slain in Shopian encounter

A top Lashkar-e-Taiba commander was among the two militants slain during an encounter with the armed forces in South Kashmir’s Shopian district on Monday.

Police said acting on specific information generated by the Shopian police about the presence of militants at village Check-i-Sidique Khan area, a joint cordon and search operation was launched by the police, Army’s 34 RR and 178 BN of the CRPF.

During the search operation, as the presence of militants got ascertained they were given repeated opportunities to surrender, however, they fired indiscriminately upon the joint search party which retaliated leading to an encounter.

“In the ensuing encounter, two militants of LeT were killed and their bodies were retrieved from the site of encounter,” police said.

They have been identified as Ishfaq Ahmad Dar, a resident of Hafshirmal in Shopian and was a top LeT commander active since 2017. The other militant was Majid Iqbal Bhat, a resident of Melibagh Imamsahab, Shopian.

“As per police records, both the militants were part of groups involved in various attacks on the armed forces,” police said.

It is pertinent to mention that Ishfaq Ahmad Dar was active since 2017 and figured among the list of most-wanted militants. He was very instrumental in planning and executing attacks on security establishments and motivating youth to join militant folds.

“He was also involved in the killing of four police personnel at minority guard Zainapora on 11/12/2018, killing of two non-local drivers in Chittrigam Shopian on 24/10/2019. Moreover, on his behest two youths, namely Asif Lone resident of Khudwani Kulgam and Ab Rashid Thoker resident of Hussanpora Arwani, also joined the militant ranks,” police said.

Incriminating materials, arms and ammunition, including 2 AK-47 rifles and eight magazines were recovered from the site of the encounter. All the recovered materials have been taken into case records for further investigation.

Police have registered a case and investigation has been initiated.

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