MASTERMIND Behind Pulwama Carnage among 2 Terrorists Gundowned

FOUR Army personnel, including a major, and two Jaish militants were killed in an encounter in Jammu and Kashmir’s Pulwama district on Monday, three days after a JeM suicide bomber drove his explosives-laden vehicle into a CRPF bus in the area killing 49 security personnel .A civilian was also killed in the exchange of fire in Pinglan area of Pulwama district. The militants are believed to be linked to the February 14 car bombing,” a defence spokesperson said. One of the militants killed had been identified as Hilal Ahmed, a local believed to be from the Jaish-e-Mohammed, officials said. Security forces launched a cordon and search operation during the night after receiving inputs about the presence of militants in the area, a police official said. Militants fired at forces as the searches got under way, triggering a gun battle. Pakistan  based  Jaish-e-Mohammed has claimed responsibility for the February 14 terror attack, stated to be worst since militancy erupted in the border state in 1989.”One of the two slain JeM terrorists was a top commander and belonged to Pakistan.”The gun battle also claimed the lives of three other soldiers of different ranks along with a civilian identified as Mushtaq Ahmad. The gunfight started late on Sunday after security forces, including the Rashtriya Rifles (RR), Special Operations Group (SOG) of the state police and the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), surrounded the village following a tip off that JeM militants were hiding in Pinglena village.”As the cordon was tightened, the holed-up militants fired triggering the gunfight. Firing exchanges are continuing at the encounter site,” Kalia added (with inputs from news channels).

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