Monday, August 13, 2001, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

NC leader among 12 killed

Srinagar, August 12
A BSF jawan was killed and 18 others, including 15 civilians, were injured in a grenade blast at a bus stand in Kupwara this afternoon while a ruling National Conference (NC) leader was among 12 killed in overnight militancy-related incidents across the valley.

Three police personnel were also wounded in the blast.

A report from Baramulla said militants hurled a hand grenade towards a security force picket near the crowded bus stand in Kupwara this afternoon, resulting in injuries to 19 persons, including a BSF jawan and three police personnel.

The BSF jawan died before he could be shifted to hospital, official sources said and added the other injured were admitted to different hospitals.

The report said heavily armed militants attacked a security force patrol party at Devar Lolab in North Kashmir today resulting in on the spot death of a jawan and injuries to two others. However, the ultras managed to escape to a nearby forest.

An official spokesman said militants entered the house of ruling NC leader Mohammad Sikander Ganai at Frisal in Kulgam and shot him dead late last night. He is the first ruling NC leader who fell to militant bullets after government declared all six districts of the Jammu region disturbed.

A security personnel was killed and two others wounded when militants detonated a powerful improvised explosive device at Phagla in Poonch district of Jammu last evening.

Militants shot dead Abdul Majid Bhat at Haran Soibugh in Central Kashmir of Badgam last night.

At least four BSF personnel and nine civilians were injured when militants lobbed a hand grenade towards a BSF picket near Hanuman Mandir here last evening.

The injured were admitted to different hospitals in the city.

The Al-Omar Mujahideen has claimed responsibility for the attack.

Later, the BSF personnel allegedly beat up shopkeepers, pedestrians and staff of a leading Urdu weekly, “Chattan”.

Mr Tahir Mohi-uddin, Chief Editor of the Chattan told reporters that he and his staff members were beaten up by the BSF personnel after the blast.

Senior journalists from Kashmir have condemned the attack and demanded action against the guilty officials.

Mr Mohi-uddin alleged that the BSF personnel also arrested two of his staff members and damaged furniture, telephone and other equipment.

Shopkeepers of Hari Singh High Street alleged that they were beaten up by the men in uniform and their goods damaged.

The spokesman said Shabir Ahmad was injured in a mine blast at Karnah while a former counter-insurgent Altaf Hussain Khan was shot at and critically wounded by ultras at Baramulla last night.

Unidentified militants hurled a hand grenade towards the house of Ghulam Mohammad Dar at Surasyar Chadura in the central Kashmir district of Badgam, causing injuries to two inmates who were hospitalised.

The Special Operation Group (SOG) of the Jammu and Kashmir police and the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) in a joint operation killed a self-styled group commander of Hizbul Mujahideen Manzoor Ahmad Hajam at Bemina late last night. However, residents who took to streets alleged that he was brought there in a Gypsy and later killed in a fake encounter.

Troops gunned down two militants each at Buthu in Bandipora and Kriri in Baramulla last night. Some arms and ammunition were also recovered from them.

The BSF killed a foreign militant Amir Khan of the Tehreeq-e-Jehadi-Islami at Sardari Behak Machil while another Hizb militant Faqir Khan was killed at Kangan last night.

An ultra was killed by the BSF and the SOG in a joint operation at Baba Forests in Bandipora. One AK rifle, four grenades and 20 rounds were recovered from him.

The body of an unidentified person, hanging on a tree, was found at the heavily guarded Shaker Acharya hill here this morning.

An encounter took place between militants and security forces at Akingam in South Kashmir district of Anantnag last night in which one civilian was killed and two soldiers were injured. UNI


2 hurt in Delhi bomb blast
Tightest ever security for I-Day

New Delhi, August 12
Barely three days ahead of Independence Day, a bomb exploded on the Ring Road in the South Extension area late last night, causing minor injuries to two persons, police sources said here today.

The blast, which occurred at around 11:30 pm yesterday, was apparently caused due to a crude device, suspectedly being transported in a vehicle, the sources said.

Windscreens of two vehicles were smashed and a tyre of another autorickshaw burst under the impact of the blast.

The police suspects that the device either fell off the vehicle accidentally or was dropped intentionally.

The blast occurred even as Delhi and the border districts of Uttar Pradesh and Haryana have been placed on a high alert and vigil and security beefed up immensely.

Intelligence reports have warned that militants may carry out subversive activities around Independence Day.

The police is looking for three persons who were travelling in one of the autorickshaws and disappeared after the blast.

Meanwhile, the Capital will virtually turn into a fortress on August 15 with around 80,000 security personnel, besides the Air Force, providing a near foolproof cover to the Independence Day celebrations to be held amid a “high threat” scenario.

The Red Fort, main venue from where Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee will address the nation at 7.30 am has been made out of bounds since August 7.

“Open and bold threats against the Prime Minister and his senior Cabinet colleagues have been extended by Pak-sponsored terrorists. One intelligence report has even indicated possible involvement of women terrorists in ‘fidayeen’ attacks,’’ Special Commissioner of Police (Security) R.S. Gupta said.

Sharpshooters from the National Security Guards have been placed at strategic points to command sensitive areas and a radius of 1 to 3 kilometres from the fort.Back

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