One Killed, 2 Dozen Militants Surrender
19 April 2007
The Daily Excelsior
Srinagar: One person was killed and two others were injured in three different firing incidents in Sopore town of North Kashmir, whileas over two dozen militants surrendered before the security forces in Uri sector today. A police spokesman said militants crashed into the house of one Shahzad Ahmad Dar at Dangerpora, Sopore, about 55 km from here late last night and fired on him. He succumbed before he could be shifted to hospital. The militants later managed to escape under the cover of darkness before security forces could reach there. Militants shot at and critically wounded one Naseer Ahmad Pir at Bulgam, Sopore while one Shahnawaz Ahmad Kaloo was injured in militant firing at Chandipora-Arampora Sopore. The injured have been hospitalised, the spokesman said. He said police parties were rushed to different areas to nab the militants responsible for the shootouts. Sopore Police today arrested one Hilal Ahmad Pir, a resident of Boniyar along with a pistol and some rounds of ammunition, he added. Hilal Pir has admitted his involvement in all the three shootouts, he said. Meanwhile, over two dozen militants, given arms training in different camps in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (PoK) sneaked into India and surrendered before troops in the Uri sector, official sources said. A Defence Ministry spokesman, confirming the surrender of militants, said it was the largest group. However, he declined to give exact number saying the surrender function will be held at Rampur tomorrow where the militants will meet their parents and other relatives. The heavily armed militants crossed over to India from PoK early this morning and surrendered after they were challenged by the troops guarding the LoC at Rampur, the sources said. Majority Kashmiri militants in different camps across the border want to surrender and lead a normal life here, they added. The militants, who surrendered today, have contacted troops through their family members expressing their desire to surrender after their return. It was only after the security forces gave green signal, the militants returned and surrendered, the sources said. About one hundred militants and their family members have so far surrendered before the troops after their return from PoK after October 8, 2005 killer quake in which about one lakh people had lost their lives and several militants camps were destroyed. A number of militants, who had married in PoK and Pakistan, also returned here along with their wives and children. The surrendered ultra said Kashmiri militants were being mistrusted and are forced bonded labourers in PoK. Meanwhile, massive search operation, by the security forces was going on in about a dozen villages at Balhama in Pulwama district of South Kashmir for the past three days following intelligence inputs about the presence of militants there. Official sources said security forces cordoned off about a dozen villages at Balhama, on April 17 after receiving a tip off that some militants were hiding there. They said all exit points were sealed and male members were directed to assemble in the open. They were later paraded before 'Cats' (Informers) and their identity cards properly checked. Later, security forces conducted house-to- house searches but could not find anything. Meanwhile, Police today recovered an infant kidnapped from a Government hospital here three days ago and arrested a woman in this connection. The 18-month-old boy was kidnapped from L D Women Hospital on Tuesday afternoon, police said. The child was located in the city and handed over to his parents.