Two militants killed near Trikuta Hills
16 January 2006
The Daily Excelsior
Excelsior Special Correspondent
Srinagar: Two militants of Lashkar-e-Toiba outfit, who were reported to be heading towards Trikuta hills, housing holy shrine of Mata Vaishnodevi, were gunned down by Reasi police at Anji nullah in village Harot Kot, about 15 kms from Reasi, this afternoon. An identity card recovered from one of the militant showed him hailing from Rajouri but he actually belonged to Mahore. Another militant was reported to be a Kashmiri. SSP Reasi Jagdish Lal Sharma, who supervised the operation, said a contact with the militants was established at 12.30 pm today by a police party led by SDPO Reasi Pawan Parihar after four days search operation at Anji nullah near village Harot Kot, falling near Trikuta hills. After an hour long fierce gun-fighting, both the militants were eliminated by the police personnel. Two AK rifles, eight AK magazines, 199 rounds, one wireless set, Rs 2077 Indian currency, Rs 15 in Pakistan currency and one Rial were recovered from the slain militants. An identity card was recovered from one of the slain militant, which had been issued by Tehsildar Rajouri. It revealed his identity as Mohd Farid alias Abu Zaffar son of Ghulam Mohd, a resident of Rajouri. However, it was not sure that the identity card was a genuine. According to sources, identity of the militant was same but he was infact a resident of Angralla, Mahore. He was a close associate of LeT district commander Abu Saad. Another slain militant was believed to be a Kashmiri but his identity was not known. The militants were first spotted near a Bakerwal Colony at Kotli Bhagga, leading to Trikuta hills, about four days back. Immediately after getting a report, IGP Jammu Dr S P Vaid had deputed different teams from Reasi, Katra, Jammu, Udhampur and Ramban to the spot to eliminate or apprehend the militants. The police parties were led by SSP Reasi J L Sharma, SP Katra M L Mehra and SDPO Katra Anil Magotra, DySP Operations Jammu Shailey Singh and DySP IRP 2nd battalion from Ramban Benam Tosh. The police parties had surrounded Trikuta Hills from all four sides to ensure that the militants didnt manage to come even close to Mata Vaishnodevi shrine. In the meantime, security had already been beefed up around the natural cave shrine by Katra police. It was after four days massive search operation that a contact was established with the militants by a team of Reasi police at 12.30 pm and both the militants were gunned down in an hour long encounter. Sources said the militants might have planned to target Mata Vaishnodevi shrine. The route they were using also pointed to this, they added.