Disrupting an anti-militancy operation, a stone-pelting mob helped some terrorists, suspectedly including the Kashmir chief of Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), escape from the dragnet of security forces in Pulwama district, police said on Wednesday. As a result, the operation launched last evening was called off this morning, a police official said. The operation was launched after a tip-off about the presence of militants, including LeT’s Kashmir chief Abu Dujana, in Hakripora area, the official said.
When the security forces launched a cordon-and-search operation, the militants opened fire, triggering a gunbattle. However, a mob threw stones at the security personnel to disrupt the operation, which helped the militants to flee, the police official said.
“Searches were concluded this morning. There was no fresh firing as the militants seemed to have escaped from the cordon last night,” the official said. There have been several instances of mobs indulging in stone-pelting on the forces to disrupt such anti-militancy operations in Kashmir.
At times, the security forces have suffered casualties because of such incidents. Some months back, Army chief Gen Bipin Rawat had warned that stone-pelters would be treated as supporters of terrorists and dealt with accordingly. However, despite that warning, such incidents are continuing.