SRI NAGAR: THE Indian Army foiled a major infiltration bid by killing six militants near the Line of Control (LoC) at Keran sector in Jammu and Kashmir’s Kupwara district. Earlier, on Thursday, an Army soldier was killed and another injured in a gunfight with militants in the same sector. Security forces have killed at least 18 militants in gunfights along the LoC in north Kashmir after New Delhi on May 16 declared ceasefire during the holy month of Ramzan.
In Srinagar, Defence spokesperson Colonel Rajesh Kalia told TNIE that a group of militants tried to infiltrate into the Indian side of the LoC at Keran sector in the early hours. Soldiers deployed at the LoC detected the suspicious movement and fired at the militant group, he said. The militants returned fired from automatic weapons, triggering a fierce gunfight. Six militants were killed in the ensuing gunfight that continued till afternoon. Kalia said bodies of all the six militants were traced, and their identity and their outfit were being ascertained. A large cache of arms and ammunition was recovered from the encounter site.
The Defence spokesperson said the Army personnel were conducting the search operation. It is being suspected that the slain militants were affiliated either with Jaish-e-Mohammad or Lashkar-e-Toiba. Another Army officer said the group of heavily armed militants tried to sneak through under the cover of darkness and difficult terrain. “However, the group was confronted by the vigilant jawans and killed in the gunfight.”
No fresh gunfight was reported since afternoon. The jawans were sanitising the area by carrying out thorough searches to ensure that no militant escaped security dragnet. Army helicopters hovered over the area to help the troops on the ground. The officer said Army men deployed along the Line of Control are on a high alert to prevent any attempt by militants to enter the northern state that shares the border with Pakistan.