4 top LeT, JeM terrorists killed
22 July 2002
The Daily Excelsior
UDHAMPUR: Security forces today killed four terrorists of Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) and Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) in two encounters in Banihal and Gool areas while seven persons including four police personnel were injured in an IED blast in Marmat area of Doda district. While three terrorists were killed in Banihal, another ultra was eliminated by security forces in Gool, official sources said. They said a joint patrol party of army’s 2 Jat and Special Task Force (STF) were carrying out a routine search operation in Sarachi Gali in Mahu Mangat area, about 22 kms west of Banihal town when they were fired upon by a group of terrorists. The patrol party replied the firing. An exchange of firing started between the two sides at 0830 hours and continued for over one hour. Sources said two terrorists were gunned down by the security personnel during the exchange of firing while one of their associates fled away. Army and STF jawans chased the fleeing terrorist and shot him dead after about half an hour long operation. No casualties were reported on the side of army or STF in the encounter. Slain terrorists, whose bodies have been recovered from the encounter site, were identified as Bashir Ahmed R-o Tanka, Banihal, Rahim and Abdul Karim, residents of Aram Dhakki, Banihal. They were activists of Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) outfit. Recoveries made from them included one Universal Machine Gun (UMG), one SLR, one AK rifle, three hand grenades, one telescopic vision, two boxes loaded with UMG and AK ammunition and another box full with the material used in making Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs). Another terrorist was shot dead by the Border Security Force (BSF) at Pathri Gali in Dharamkund area under Gool police station’s jurisdiction in early hours of this morning. The terrorist, suspected to be a foreign mercenary, was gunned down by the security personnel when he tried to escape on observing movement of a BSF patrol party, the sources said. Two hand grenades were recovered from his possession, they said, adding ‘it appeared that the terrorist was on way to throw grenades on a security forces installation’. A slip found in possession of the terrorist revealed his affiliation with Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) outfit. Meanwhile, four STF jawans and three civilians were injured in an IED blast at village Labbar in Marmat area of Doda district this morning. The STF jawans were patrolling the villages when an IED, planted by the terrorists on foot track, went off. Injured have been identified as Javed Ahmed, Naresh Kumar, Kuldeep Kumar and Daya Krishan, all constables of STF and Mohd Yusuf son of Abdul Yusuf, Anayatullah son of Mustafa and Showkat Ali son of Anayat Ali, all civilians, hailing from Labbar village. Injured have been hospitalised. During searches carried out by police after IED blast, another live IED was detected on same track. It was defused by a Bomb Disposal Squad. A post of STF also came under firing by the terrorists at Kanihal in Neel, about 25 kms from Banihal late last night. Firing was replied by the STF personnel forcing the terrorists to flee within half an hour of the attack. No casualties were reported on either side, the sources said.