UDHAMPUR: In an incident witnessed by a large number of helpless bystanders, an 18-year old girl, a resident of Chuteri village near Thatri, was shot dead by militants for resisting their overtures. Dreaded militant Manzoor of the LET is believed to be behind this incident.
On the night of February 27, a group of militants with their faces covered barged into the house of Anwar Din Bhatt, father of Jahida Bano. On facing resistance from the girl they dragged her out of her house, pumping bullets into her in front of the villagers. The girl died on the spot.
The killing is believed to be done to teach a lesson the villagers for denying sexual comforts to the Mujahids. Fearing the reaction of the security forces from then nearby post at Thatri, the militants disappeared into the adjoining forest areas after the killing.
Villagers have reported that Manzoor is local militant working with LET and has been visiting the Dautas, Batara and Chuteri villages regularly, forcing the young girls of these areas to be objects of sexual violation at gunpoint. On the night of the incident, he was accompanied by Hamid and Talib of the LET group.
This is the first instance when a girl resisted the whishes of the militants. A massive manhunt has been launched by the security forces to nab the militants.
Meanwhile, the security forces managed to kill two top ultras in two separate encounters in Kishtwar and Banihal tehsil, respectively. One of them was reportedly a foreign militant.
The foreign mercenary was shot dead in a joint operation by the troops of Rashtriya Rifles and STF in Zaban village, 2 km north of Gund in Banihal.
The troops led by Major Praveen Airy converged on the village from various directions and sealed all escape routes. In the encounter that lasted over an hour, one militant was shot dead. A pistol, a radio set, three grenades and blank LET letter pad were seized.
In another joint operation conducted by the STF and the Army near Dul village in Kishtwar tehsil, a notorious militant, Gulam Kadir Bhatt alias Bitta, a resident of Dul was shot dead in an encounter which lasted over two hours. Bitta is known to have been involved in a daring robbery where he looted Rs. 30,000 at gunpoint from NHPC engineers working at the Dul hydel project.
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