Gunfight erupts in Hajin village in northern Kashmir

J&K Police chief Shesh Pal Vaid confirmed that six militants including Lakhvi's nephew were gunned down. File

J&K Police chief Shesh Pal Vaid confirmed that six militants including Lakhvi's nephew were gunned down. File

In an encounter which broke out between security forces and militants in Hajin area of north Kashmir's Bandipora district today, 5 militants were killed. "One of the militants named Owaid is the son of Zaki-ur-Rehman Maki and nephew of Zaki-Ur- Rehman Lakhvi" (the alleged Mumbai attack mastermind), tweeted Director general of Police SP Vaid.

A senior police official said that the killed militants include Lashkar commanders Zargam and Mehmood. Some police officers said that this is one of a big setback for the terrorists as the same area had witnessed a series of attacks on security forces by terrorists. A Garud commando of the Indian Air Force (IAF) was also martyred in the encounter, said a defence spokesperson.

Earlier this month, Army had said that around 80 militants have been killed in south Kashmir in the past six months and around 115 ultras are still active in the region, of whom over a dozen were foreign terrorists.

A senior police officer told DH that it was a group of nine LeT militants led by Mehmood Bhai which had made Hajin their basin for nearly two years. His pro-India and anti-Pakistan insurgency and politics led to successful Lok Sabha and Assembly elections in Kashmir in 1996.

"Six terrorists have been killed in the encounter", Kalia told AFP. "In the gunfight so far five militants have been killed and the operation is on", an Army officer said.

So far, five militants have been killed in the gunfight that erupted on Saturday afternoon.

On August 27, 2017, suspected LeT terrorists spread a wave of terror by beheading a 24-year-old civilian Muzaffar Ahmad Parray of Hajin whose body was spotted and fished out from river Jhelum next day. Prior to that, two terrorists had got killed in an encounter in Bonikhan Hajin on November 22, 2016.

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