3 Cops Injured; Big Success: IGP

3 Cops Injured; Big Success: IGP

23 May 2013
Greater Kashmir
Shabir ibn Yusuf

Srinagar: A Lashker-e-Toiba (LeT) militant commander was killed while three policemen including an officer were injured in an early morning raid on Thursday in Fatehkadal area of Srinagar, police said. Inspector General of Police (IGP) Kashmir, Abdul Ghani Mir termed it a big success. The militant was identified as Hilal Ahmad Rather alias Hilal Moulvi of Pattan area of Baramulla district of north Kashmir. He, according to police, had joined militant ranks in 2012 after being booked under Public Safety Act (PSA) in cases relating to stone throwing and disruption of peace. A top police official said that on specific information about presence of militants in the area, Special Operations Group (SOG) of JK Police cordoned off the house of Khursheed Ahmad Wani in Narparistan, Fatehkadal in old Srinagar at 1.10 A.M. He said that SOG search party knocked the door of the house at 1.30 A.M for carrying out search operation. Police said the militant hiding inside lobbed two grenades and took shelter beneath the veranda of the house. “As the police party started advancing, the militant lobbed two more grenades and opened fire with a pistol,” the police official said adding that the fire was retaliated and in the ensuing gunfight the militant was killed. “The firefight continued for eight minutes,” he said. The official said three cops including an officer were injured. They were identified as sub-inspector Taseer Ahmad, constable Basharat Hussain and constable Mukhtar Ahmad. All of them, the official said, received splinter injuries. Old Srinagar witnessed such an encounter after a long lull of eight years. In the last such encounter in the area, Hizbul Mujahideen operational chief was killed in 2005. The police official said that since the arrest of Fahadullah in Sopore on April 16, Hilal Molvi was being tracked. “He had arrived in Srinagar a week ago,” the official said that Hilal Molvi was not using cell-phone from last some days. “He was tracked purely on human intelligence,” the police official said. “On the information revealed by Fahadullah, an operation was launched by SOG and 22-RR in Wagub village of Tarzoo area in Sopore April 18 that has resulted in killing of a local LeT militant, while his associate escaped. We believe Hilal escaped that day and we tracked him,” he added. Hilal Moulvi, the top police official said has joined LeT ranks in September 2012. He said that he was earlier booked under PSA twice. “In May 2012 he was released and in September Hilal joined LeT,” he said and added that Hilal Moulvi used to take part in stone throwing and disruption of peace. “For the same he was booked under PSA,” the official said. IGP Kashmir, Abdul Ghani Mir termed it big success. “He was a big LeT commander and it is major jolt to the outfit,” Mir told Greater Kashmir. “Earlier, we arrested Fahdullah, then killed Shaka,” he added. The senior police officer said that investigations have been started to ascertain the purpose of Hilal Molvi’s presence in Srinagar. Meanwhile, a youth, identified as Muzamil Kursheed Wani, living close to the gunfight site in which LeT commander was killed is missing since last night, his parents said. Muzamil lives a few meters away from the gunfight site. POLICE VERSION: A police spokesman Thursday evening said that today morning an encounter took place at Narparistan Fatehkadal, Srinagar in the jurisdiction of police station M R Gunj. “In this encounter North Kashmir Lashkar Commander Hilal Ahmad Rather alias Moulvi alias Khalid was killed. Police and CRPF launched an operation last night in the area after receiving specific information. The area was cordoned off. The hiding militant threw grenades towards the operation party and also fired few rounds. The police party retaliated and in the ensuing gunfight, the militant got killed. During the encounter, three police personnel also received injuries. The slain militant was affiliated with Lashkar-e-Toiba,” the spokesman said. The said militant, the spokesman said was wanted in 10 FIRs lodged at different police stations, for his role in militancy related incidents. Police said, besides, being involved in the killing of a Sarpanch in Palhallan along with another militant Shaka, he was involved in the killing of a civilian Bashir Ahmad of Kunzer. He was also involved in grenade attacks in Pattan, spokesman added. Hilal, spokesman said, was actively involved in extending the network of militants at various places in the valley. The spokesman said that he was also involved in burning of Police Station Pattan in 2010. “This particular operation is a great success for the security forces,” added the spokesman