Security forces gunned down two Hizbul Mujahideen militants in a brief encounter at Nathipora village on the outskirts of Srinagar on Thursday. The slain militants, police said, were behind the grenade attack on Wednesday near Sopore police station, which left four policemen injured. “In a quick operation, J&K Police identified two terrorists who were instrumental in throwing the grenade on its men at Sopore and eliminated them,” police spokesperson Manoj Kumar said.
Police have identified the militants as Ajaz Ahmad Mir, a resident of Brath Kalan village of Sopore, and Basharat Ahmad Sheikh, a resident of Bomai village in Sopore. According to Mir’s family, the 23-year-old was pursuing an LLB course from Kashmir University when he left home a year ago. They alleged that police would harass him before he left home.
“Earlier, he was pursuing a Masters in Arabic at Bhopal. Three years ago, when he returned, police called him. They then detained him and kept him behind bars for two years,” said Mir’s father, adding that he did not know why he was detained. “In jail, he applied for some distance learning courses in Kashmir University and was selected for the LLB course. One day, after his release from jail, the Sopore SP called him to his office. After returning home, he sat for barely 10 minutes before leaving for the university. It was the 15th day of Ramadan last year. Since then, we had no information about him.”