Four people, including three militants and a woman, were killed in an encounter in the heart of Srinagar on Thursday. One CRPF officer also sustained injuries during the operation.
All the three militants killed in Batamaloo area of Srinagar were locals from south Kashmir, Director General of Police (DGP) Dilbagh Singh said at a press conference in Srinagar after the operation was over.
One woman, identified as Kounsar Jan, 45, also died in the firing. The killing of the woman in cross firing is unfortunate. I express my sympathies with the bereaved family, said Mr. Singh.
The encounter broke out around 2.30 a.m. when a joint team of the police and the CRPF zeroed in on a house, following a tip-off, in the congested locality of Batamaloo. They were offered [the option] to surrender but they refused, Mr. Singh said.
A CRPF spokesman said Deputy Commandant Rahul Mathur, who showed exemplary courage, also sustained two bullet injuries. He has been taken to the 92 Base Hospital and is being treated, the spokesman said.
The police said arms and ammunition was recovered from the slain militants. Efforts are always put in to ensure zero collateral damage. Todays operation was the seventh in Srinagar this year. The biggest success, however, was the killing of Hizbul Mujahideen commander Junaid Sehrai (in May), Mr. Singh said.
Meanwhile, the toll of militants killed this year has now risen to 177 militants in 72 operations across the Kashmir valley. Twenty-two foreign militants were also killed during this period.
Mr. Singh said Pakistan was trying to float new outfits to create confusion. Efforts are being made to revive Al-Badr. Despite huge efforts by militants and their handlers across, 20 youth who trod the wrong path returned, he said.