Doda: A militant hailing from south Kashmir’s Pulwama district was killed by government forces in a gunfight in the Jammu region’s Doda district. According to a statement by the police, “specific information” regarding the whereabouts of Mr. Tahir Ahmed Bhat was received late last night.
The Jammu police has claimed that Mr. Bhat was assigned the task of “Revival of Terrorism” in the Jammu region’s Chenab Valley. The police has said that Mr. Bhat was a close associate of Saifullah Mir, believed to be the newly appointed “operational chief” of the Hizb.
The police stated that it has recovered one AK-47 assault rifle and a magazine from the site of the gunfight in Khotra Roti Padarna village, nearly 25 km from Doda town. According to the police statement, Mr. Bhat is named in a case pertaining to the “fabrication of IED which was exploded near a CRPF convoy at Banihal in March 2019”. The police has said that following this, Mr Bhat was recruited by the Hizbul Mujahideen, Jammu and Kashmir’s largest militant outfit, early last year and was given “the task of recruiting youth and reviving HM activities in the Chenab valley”.
The police has also claimed that Mr Bhat was involved in the killing of far right activist, Mr. Chanderkant Sharma of the Rashirtiya Swayamsevak Sangh and his police escort in Kishtwar in April 2019. “The same AK 47 Rifle which was taken away that time has been recovered after the encounter today,” the police said in the statement, adding that “With this operation, an attempt of HM to revive activities in Doda has been nipped. The designs of the HM to target SF Convoy and Camps has also be thwarted.”
An army soldier was also killed in the gunfight. The army soldier was “killed when a joint team of security forces launched a house to house search,” Director General (DG) Dilbagh Singh told India Today.