3 Lashkar militants shot dead in Doda
19 September 2006
The Daily Excelsior
Srinagar: Police and Army today gunned down three Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) militants including a Pakistani in an encounter at Tanta Draman in Gandoh area of Doda district. Another militant escaped during the five hour gun-battle. A police party from Bartinda picket of Gandoh police station was looking for a group of four militants since a contact with them was established last month but they had managed to escape. SSP Doda Manohar Singh said the police party, joined by the Special Task Force (STF) and troops of 26 Rashtriya Rifles spotted the militants last night in a dhok at Tanta Draman and cordoned off the area. Presence of police was strengthened in the village and a strict vigil was maintained on the dhok from a distance. A contact with the militants was established this morning after which a heavy exchange of gun fighting ensued between the two sides which continued till 11.30 am. Three militants were killed in the operation while their fourth associate managed to escape towards a surrounding forest area. He was being searched by the security and police personnel. Security forces or police didn't suffer any casualties in the operation. Slain militants have been identified as Mohd Sadiq alias Abu Haider son of Din Mohd R-o Joura, Mohd Imran alias Abu Sofian son of Abdul Hamid Magrey R-o Kota and Umar Pathan, a Pakistani. All of them were activists of Lashkar-e-Toiba outfit and were operating in Doda district for last two to three years. Sources said Umar Pathan was 'section commander' while Mohd Sadiq was 'tehsil commander'. Their killing was a big blow to the outfit. Recoveries made from the scene of encounter include two AK rifles, four magazines, 40 rounds, four Chinese hand grenades and one radio set. DIG Udhampur-Doda range Lalatendu Mohanty, SSP Doda Manohar Singh and SP Bhadarwah Ashok Sharma supervised the operation. Sources said all four militants had escaped in an operation in Gandoh last month. Meanwhile, the SSP Doda today announced a reward of Rs 50,000 each on a dismissed SPO and a surrendered militant who had recently killed two SPOs at Chanyas police post and escaped with six rifles and a large quantity of ammunition after locking five to six SPOs inside the post. Security forces destroyed a hide-out of the militants at Marhote in Surankote tehsil of Poonch district last night. Recoveries made from the hide-out include one UBGL, one rifle grenade, three mortar shells, eight IEDs, two AK magazines, one sniper rifle magazine, 30 AK rounds and five IED boxes.