Srinagar, Nov 25: Top commanders of Hizb ul Mujahideen and Lashkar-e-Toiba among six militants and a territorial army soldier were killed in a fierce gunfight in Batagund area of south Kashmir’s Shopian district on Sunday.
Report’s reaching GNS said that a joint team of army’s 34RR, CRPF, and SOG Shopian launched a cordon-and-search operation in Batagund village during pre-dawn hours.
A senior Police official confirmed to GNS that the cordon was laid following “credible inputs” about the presence of Hizb and LeT militants in the village.
Soon after the joint team intensified the searches and fired some warning shots towards the suspected spot, the group of militants hiding inside a residential house opened indiscriminate fire and tried to escape, the officer said, adding that the militant group was engaged in a gunfight by the joint team.
After several hours of the firefight, six militants were killed and two army soldiers received bullet wounds, he said.
The injured soldiers Nazir Ahmad of 162 territorial army (TA) and Sepoy Sunil of 34 RR were immediately taken to military hospital for treatment. However, Nazir, a former Ikhwan commander of Check Ashmuji, Kulgam later succumbed to injuries.
The police officer identified the slain militants as Umar Majid Ganai alias Hanzullah son of Abdul Majid Ganie of Shuch Kulgam (HM commander), Waseem Wagay son of Abdul Hamid Wagay of Amshipora, Shopian (Hizb), Abbas Sheikh of Mantribug Shopian (Hizb) and Mushtaq Ahmad Mir of Chak-e- Choland (LeT commander), Khalid Farooq Malik of Alyalpora Shopian (HM) and sixth one is believed to be a foreigner.
While Umer and Mushtaq had joined Hizb and LeT in 2015 and 2014, Abbas and Waseem joined the militant ranks in 2016 and Khalid had joined the militant outfit in April this year.
Umar Majid Ganai has escaped a few months ago during a shootout in Batamalo area of Srinagar that left an SOG man dead.
Pertinently, a picture of Umar Majid Ganie has gone viral on social media earlier this week which has reportedly taken by him near Ghanta Ghar, Lal Chowk, Srinagar.
However, police said that they are verifying the facts and said that the picture could be morphed or taken long back before going viral on social media.
Meanwhile, as soon as the gunfight broke out, mobile internet service was suspended in parts of south Kashmir including Shopian and Kulgam districts.
Authorities have also suspended the train services to and fro South Kashmir while as there was also a spontaneous shutdown in Kulgam and Shopian.