HM militant killed, LeT area commander arrested
6 October 2005
The Daily Excelsior
Excelsior Special Correspondent
Jammu: Police and Army gunned down a Hizbul Mujahideen militant at Khashodi, Gandoh in Doda district this evening while security forces arrested a Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) ‘area commander’ during a search operation in Dhamkund area of Ramban police district and two ‘recruiting agents’ in Banihal. A fresh recruit was rescued from their clutches. SSP Doda Prithvi Raj Manhas said a joint team of police and 26 Rashtriya Rifles eliminated a Hizbul Mujahideen militant Shafkat Ahmed son of Abdul Rehman Rather, a resident of Bisran, Gandoh, in a two hour long fierce gun-battle at Khashodi, Gandoh this evening. The operation was on when the reports last came in as two associates of Shafkat were suspected to be hiding in the area. One AK rifle, two magazines and three grenades have so far been recovered from the scene of encounter. Mr Manhas said Bhaderwah police and troops of 4 Rashtriya Rifles busted a hide-out of the militants at Sikri Dhar in Bhaderwah and recovered one SLR, six magazines, 290 rounds, five detonators, 200 AK rounds and a large quantity of ration. Official sources said security forces launched a search operation in Khatanu area near Dhamkund under the jurisdiction of Ramban police district this morning after developing an information that a Lashkar ‘commander’ had taken shelter in an abandoned dhok. Security forces cordoned off the dhok and asked the militant to come out and surrender. After a brief exchange of firing, security forces arrested the militant. He has been identified as Mushtaq Ahmed Lone. Recoveries made from his possession include one AK rifle, three magazines, two grenades and a radio set. The militant was whisked away for questioning immediately after his arrest. He was operating in Gool-Mahore belt for last about two years and was involved in a series of subversive activities. His arrest had dealt a blow to the LeT outfit, the sources said. Troops of Rashtriya Rifles today arrested two recruiting agents of Hizbul Mujahideen from village Arpinchla, about seven kms from Banihal tehsil. They were engaged in luring the local youths into militancy. They have been identified as Shah Nawaz, 22, son of Abdul Gani and Bashir Darji, 26, son of Ghulam Rasool, both residents of Arpinchla. Shah Nawaz was a driver in JP Industry. A 19 year old youth Shabir Ahmed son of Mohd Yaseen R-o Arpinchla, who had recently been recruited in Hizbul Mujahideen by the duo was rescued by the troops. Army have handed over the Hizbul recruiting agents to Banihal police station for questioning. The youth, rescued by the troops, is being handed over to his family. Army busted a hide-out of the militants at Maliyansar, about 14 km from Banihal and recovered 150 kg ration. The hide-out had been raised on a hill and comprised two small rooms and a toilet. Another hide-out was detected at Lothoi Nullah in Mahore area of Reasi police district from where one hand grenade and 50 kg rice were recovered. An AK rifle, five grenades, 47 rounds and some ration items were recovered during a search operation by security forces in Sangna forests in Doda district last night. An AK rifle and three hand grenades were recovered from another hide-out in Lar village of Rajouri district.