Jaish chief Dawood Khan gunned down in Mendhar17 January 2010
The Daily Excelsior
JAMMU: In a major success, Army and police today gunned down Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) chief for Poonch district, Dawood Khan, a Pakistan national in a fierce exchange of gun-battle at Narol forests in Mendhar tehsil of Poonch district this evening while another Pakistani intruder was gunned down by the Border Security Force (BSF) at village Devigarh in Arnia sector early today. DIG Rajouri-Poonch range S D Singh told the Excelsior tonight that a top militant gunned down in a joint operation by Army and police at Narol forests tonight has been identified as Abdullah Sani alias Dawood son of Fazal Jat, a resident of Dabowal, Pakistan, who was operating as Jaish chief and ‘divisional commander’ for Poonch district. Dawood, who had commanded the militants in nine days long operation with security forces at Bhati Dhar forests from January 1 last year, was a dreaded militant operating in different parts of Poonch district especially in Mendhar. Dawood was also operating with code name of Sheikh and was active in Poonch district for last about a decade. Besides being the Jaish chief for Poonch district, Dawood was also co-ordinating activities of all militant outfits and was involved in luring youths into militancy. He was involved in a series of subversive activities including killings, IED blasts etc in Poonch. Director General of Police (DGP) Kuldeep Khoda has congratulated police and Army teams for their major success in eliminating dreaded militant and Jaish chief for Poonch district. He said the killing has delivered a major blow to the militants in general and Jaish outfit in particular. He appreciated the role of Army and police teams which led the operation. SSP Poonch Manmohan Singh supervised police team in the operation. Earlier, troops of 37 and 39 Rashtriya Rifles joined by the Special Operations Group (SOG) had laid a cordon in entire Balakote and Mendhar sectors following yesterday’s two infiltration attempts by the militants from across the Line of Control (LoC) after tracers fired by Pakistan Army had led to fire in about three kilometers area in Balnoi. While Dawood was killed in the operation, there were reports that his two body-guards were still trapped in the area and were being searched by Army and police. Entire area has been cordoned off by the troops to eliminate the hiding militants. A number of messages intercepted by police late tonight revealed of a strong panic among different militant outfits especially the JeM after the killing of Dawood. One AK-56 rifle with three magazines, one I Com radio set, a mobile telephone, five identity cards of different agencies, a holy book, one pouch, one currency note of Rs 1000 and three of Rs 500 were recovered from the site of encounter. It may be mentioned here that two infiltration bids were made by the militants from Balnoi and Balakote sectors in Mendhar area yesterday. A tracer fired by Pakistan Army in Balnoi had led to fire in about three kilometer area. During past few days, several intrusion bids have been made in Mendhar sector on the LoC. Meanwhile, jawans of 110 BSF gunned down a Pakistani intruder when he was approaching the border fencing at Chawni Post in Devigarh area of Arnia sector at 2.40 am today. Sources said the BSF jawans reportedly observed movement of two intruders and asked them to surrender. While one of them retrieved, another one was gunned down. Body of the intruder was recovered this morning. His identity hasn’t been established but he was reported to be a Pakistani national. Arnia police teams led by SHO Bandeshwar Manhas rushed to the spot and shifted the body to GMC Jammu for post-mortem. Police have also launched searches in border areas. No recoveries except for some dry fruits were made from the slain intruder, who was aged about 25. Sometimes, a guide is moved ahead by the ISI to ascertain route and location of the forces on this side before launching the militants, sources said, adding that possibility of the youth being a guide is not ruled out. It may be recalled that in the same area of Devigarh, Pakistan Rangers had thrown a consignment of arms and explosive from atop the border fencing on January 8 morning. The consignment was, however, seized by police. It included 1800 grams RDX, two pistols, ammunition and Rs 29,000 cash.