Srinagar: An eight-hour-long gunbattle in Jammu and Kashmir ended this afternoon with the death of three heavily armed terrorists who were holed up inside a newly-constructed house at the congested Chhatabal in downtown Srinagar.
Security forces laid siege to the area at the crack of dawn after inputs about the presence of top Lashkar commanders. The search operation soon turned into an encounter after the terrorists fired at the security forces. Three CRPF jawans, including an officer, were injured.
State police chief SP Vaid said that the bodies of the three terrorists have been recovered from the encounter site. "Encounter has concluded in Chattabal, Srinagar. Three bodies of terrorists recovered in a clean operation by Jammu and Kashmir Police and CRPF. Their identification process is on," he told NDTV.
Three AK-47 rifles were recovered after the operation.
As the encounter was underway, clashes erupted. A video has surfaced showing a protestor knocked down dead and run over by a vehicle of the security forces. The police has called it an accident and said it has taken cognisance of the matter and initiated legal action.
"One person identified as Adil Ahmad Yadoo was brought to SMHS hospital whom doctors declared brought dead. Medical bulletin suggests that the person died due to a crush injury in a road traffic accident at Noorbagh. Citizens may not pay heed to rumours," a police spokesman said.
This is the second major encounter in Srinagar this year. In February, two terrorists were killed in a 28-hour-long encounter between security forces in Karan Nagar not far away from Chattabal.
There has been a spike in violence across the Valley ahead of the reopening of government offices in Srinagar, and just before the annual Amarnath Yatra.
At Hajan in the Bandipore district, terrorists killed two civilians. In Sopore last night, a civilian was killed and his wife critically injured after terrorists attacked them in their house.
"We don't have specific inputs about moving of offices in Srinagar here and the upcoming Amarnath Yatra but overall we are alert to it, we considered the situation fragile but under control," said Ravideep Sahi, Inspector General, CRPF.