Top Al-Badr commanders shot dead
23 December 2002
The Daily Excelsior
Excelsior Special Correspondent
Srinagar: In a significant achievement, which came barely two days after the broad daylight assassination of the ruling PDPís MLA Abdul Aziz Mir in Pampore, Border Security Force (BSF) has eliminated three top- ranking commanders of the dreaded militant outfit, Al-Badr Mujahideen, in Tral area of south Kashmir. One militant of Lashkar-e- Toiba outfit has died in an encounter with security forces in Shopian locality today. Informed official sources told EXCELSIOR that, working on a specific information, troops of BSF 120 Bn and BSF 138 Bn launched a cordon-and-search operation in the upper Tral jungle area of Kamla during last night. As the troops zeroed in on the hideout, a group of heavily armed holed up militants opened fire and made unsuccessful attempts to escape. Troops maintained a tight siege and foiled every attempt of the militants to find an exit. In a fierce gunbattle, troops eliminated three top-ranking functionaries of Al-Badr. They were identified as Shoaib Ahmed Khan alias Abu Asif alias Babar alias Ahmedyar Gaznavi S-o Abdur Rasheed Khan R-o Malac Road Multan, Fakhrul Islam alias Mujahid Masood alias Tahir alias Javed S-o Rehmat Gani R-o Jangoo, District Dhir (Pakistan) and Javed Ahmed Bhat alias Saiful Islam S-o Ghulam Nabi Bhat R-o Pazalpora, Kupwara. According to a BSF spokesman, Shoaib was Al- Badarís ''divisional commander'' for central Kashmir who had earlier held other senior positions in the organisation. Fakhrul Islam was the ''chief of operations'' in central Kashmir while as Javed Ahmed Bhat was the outfitís ''deputy divisional commander'' in central Kashmir. The BSF spokesman claimed that the slain trio had carried out a large number of attacks on security forces and civilian targets during the last several years in Kashmir valley, particularly in the border district of Kupwara. This group of well-trained Pakistani and Kashmiri guerrillas had blown up an Army vehicle in Nowgam sector and lately conducted a rocket or mortar attack on the heavily-guarded Radio Kashmir complex in Srinagar. A large quantity of arms and ammunition, including one Pika gun, two AK-56 rifles, two pistols, two UBGL throwers, seven RPGs and seven wireless sets, was recovered from the possession and hideout of the three militants killed. However, most of the residents in Tral area believed that the three militants had been captured somewhere and later gunned down in a fake encounter. Meanwhile, this afternoon, troops of Rashtriya Rifles 01 Bn eliminated shot dead a local militant of Lashkar-e-Toiba in an encounter at Aloora, in Zainapora area of Shopian-Kulgam belt in south Kashmir. He was identified as Ghulam Hassan Ganai R-o Harmain, Shopian. Last evening, unidentified gunmen fired some shots towards the residence of one Abdul Gani Mir S-o Ahsan Mir near Police Station Awantipora. He sustained a gunshot wound in his arm. He was rushed to hospital for treatment. Junior officials of SOG Tral and Awantipore Police had been frequently visiting Mirís restaurant and taking tea with him. Here in the capital city, militants lobbed a hand grenade on a parked vehicle of BSF at Bohri Kadal. It exploded and caused some damage to the targeted vehicle. However, nobody was reported killed or injured.