Seven civilians among 11 killed in Kashmir encounter, protests

While former Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti has questioned the credibility of Governor’s rule in Jammu and Kashmir, her predecessor Omar Abdullah said that newspaper ads won’t bring peace in Kashmir

PTI
PTI
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NH Web Desk

Three militants and a soldier were killed on Saturday during a gunfight in Sirnoo village of south Kashmir’s Pulwama district on Saturday, triggering tension in the region. As many as seven civilians also died and over a dozen sustained injuries after the security forces opened fire on locals protesting against the anti-militancy operation in the area.

The security forces launched a cordon and search operation in Sirnoo village on Saturday morning after receiving specific intelligence input about the presence of militants in the area, an Army officer said, adding that the search operation turned into an encounter after the militants opened fire on the security personnel.

Three militants and a soldier were killed in the gunfight, he said. The identities and group affiliation of the slain ultras were not known yet.

While the former Chief Minister of the state, Mehbooba Mufti has questioned the credibility of the Governor's rule in the state, her predecessor Omar Abdullah described the killing of protesters in security force action and a soldier attaining martyrdom in the encounter as “horrible day” and “blood-soaked weekend” in Kashmir.

Meanwhile, all trains between Srinagar and Banihal in Jammu region via South Kashmir and Srinagar Baramulla in the north remained suspended for security reasons, an official said. He said the service will be resumed only after they get a fresh advisory from the authorities. The authorities have also suspended mobile internet in the area.

Notably, this year witnessed the highest number of casualties in the state since 2006. According to the Ministry of Home Affairs data, till date this year, as many as 87 security personnel, including 44 state police personnel, 32 army jawans, seven CRPF men and one CISF, BSF and SSB jawan, were killed in the state. The data also showed 230 militants died in encounters with security personnel in Jammu and Kashmir.

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