Killing of LeT militant Saleem Parray left Hajin militancy free: Police

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Hajin: With the killing of one of the longest surviving and most wanted militants of Lashker-e-Taiba (LeT) Saleem Parray in an gunfight with government forces at Harwan area on the outskirts of Srinagar city on Monday, the Hajin tehsil in Bandipora district is now without any local surviving militant.

The Hajin tehsil in north Kashmir’s Bandipora district was once the hotbed of militancy with many local militants and dozens of foreigners has no active militant now, as all of them have been killed by the government forces.

After 1995, Abid Hamid Mir became the first local militant in 2017 who was later killed by government forces in the Sopore encounter. In October 2017, two LeT militants including a local Nasrullah Mir, son of Nazir Ahmad Mir, resident of Hajin were killed in a gunfight which also left two air force commandos dead.

In November 2017, Hajin witnessed one of major gunfights in which six militants including top LeT commanders Abu Zargam and Mehmood Bhai died.

Even top militants such as Abu Musaib, and Owaid the nephews of Zakir-ur-Rehamn Lakhwi, mastermind of Mumbai attacks stayed in the town for some time and were later killed in 2017 also.

In August 2018, the area was once again in the grip of militancy after two boys Mudasir Parray and Saquib Mushtaq disappeared from the area and had joined later militancy. However, in December of the same year govt forces killed both of them in the Mujgund gunfight, on the outskirts of Srinagar.

In January 2020, an active LeT militant Nisar Ahmad Dar, a resident of the Hajin, was arrested by the Special Operations Group of the Jammu and Kashmir Police from Shri Maharaja Hari Singh Hospital in the city.

In October 2021, J-K police had said that a local TRF militant Imtiyaz Ahmad involved in the killing of a cab driver, was killed in a gunfight with govt forces in Gundjahangir village of the tehsil.

Saleem Parray who was killed in today’s Srinagar gunfight was the last local surviving LeT militant of Hajin and was active since 2016.

A senior official told the news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO) that the Parray was involved in a number of civilian killings and other militant activities. An official said that the forces were in search of him for a long time and finally were successful in “neutralising” him.

“It is true that there are no local active militants in the Hajin area as of now. However we cannot deny the presence of local and foreign militants in Bandipora keeping in view the recent attack on police in Bandipora which left two policemen dead,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Jammu and Kashmir police in an official statement said that the second militant that was killed in a gunfight in the outskirts of Srinagar, identified as Hamza, was involved in the recent killing of two policemen at Gulshan chowk in Bandipora.

While interacting with media persons, IGP Kashmir Vijay Kumar said that Pakistani militant Hafiz @ Hamza was involved in several crimes including the recent killing of two policemen at Gulshan Chowk Bandipora on 10 December 2021.

Kumar said that after the incident, Hamza shifted to Harwan area of Srinagar due to frequent cordon and search operations in Bandipora area.

“He was also involved in killing of a CRPF personnel at Hajin Bandipora, killing of a civilian namely Nadif Hanief Khan of Bilal Colony Soura in Buchpora,” Kumar said—(KNO)

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