Sunday, December 2, 2001, Chandigarh, India

National Capital Region--Delhi


M A I N   N E W S

Major, jawan killed in encounter
Five VDC members shot by militants

Jammu/Srinagar, December 1
A Major, a jawan and two terrorists were killed in a fierce encounter at the Keri Gulati area in the Mendhar sector of Poonch district late this evening.

The SSP, Poonch, Dr Kamal Saini, said on a tip-off that some ultras were hiding in a jungle in the Keri Gulati area, the police and Army personnel launched a joint operation to flush them out.

On sighting the security personnel, the militants opened fire and in the ensuing gunbattle, which lasted about eight hours, two terrorists including a foreign mercenary belonging to the Hizb-e-Islami outfit, were shot dead, the SSP said. Dr Saini said Major Jaitly and a jawan were also killed in the encounter.

Meanwhile, a grenade blast and killings by the militants have left eight persons, including five village defence committee (VDC) members, dead and 40 others injured in Jammu and Kashmir since late last night. In other militancy-related incidents, forces shot dead 15 ultras during the past 24 hours.

A spokesman of the Kilo force said the troops killed six militants in an encounter at Palapora in Baramula district today.

Official sources said today that militants lobbed a hand grenade towards a BSF vehicle at the main chowk, Bandipora, about 55 km from here, North Kashmir at around 2.30 p.m. The grenade exploded on the roadside, injuring about 40 persons, including some policemen.

In Jammu, militants, wearing police uniforms, lured the VDC members and two others outside the village on the pretext of patrolling the area, and shot them dead.

The slain VDC members have been identified as Yashpal Singh, Chain Singh, Prem Singh and Gopal Singh. Two other victims were identified as Farooq and Mirza.

An official spokesman said the Army and the Special Operation Group (SOG) of the Jammu and Kashmir police today killed two militants in a joint operation at Zub Magam Handwara and recovered some arms and ammunition.

In an encounter between militants and security forces at Sonamula in the frontier district of Kupwara last night, Ibrahim, a self-styled divisional commander of the Al-Badr, and two other militants were killed. UNIBack


Advani asks forces to be vigilant
Afghan ultras may enter India

New Delhi, December 1
Union Home Minister L.K Advani today expressed apprehensions that terrorists operating in Afghanistan may cross over to India following the defeat of the Taliban and called for utmost vigilance on New Delhi’s part.

“We have to be vigilant against the risk of terrorists engaged in terrorism in Afghanistan, who have now come to Pakistan, spilling over into our borders. We have to be wary and vigilant,” Mr Advani said after addressing the 36th Raising Day function of the BSF here.

Earlier, addressing BSF personnel, he said the ongoing developments in Afghanistan had raised several questions about what shape the future would take in the war-torn country and what its impact would be on Pakistan.

He said after the September 11 terror strikes, “India’s war against terrorism had become the world’s war.” Mr Advani said after the terror strikes, those countries which were not able to gauge the gravity of terrorism in India had realised that it had to be wiped out globally.

He also announced Rs 1 crore as immediate allocation for the purpose. Earlier, the Home Minister presented gallantry medals to several persons, including widows of martyrs, who laid down their lives fighting terrorists.

In his address, BSF Director-General Gurbachan Jagat said a modernisation plan of the force had been finalised under the guidance of the Home Ministry and it would be implemented in phases.

An excellent parade including a breathtaking performance by BSF daredevils on motor cycles, marked the celebrations, attended among others by Home Secretary Kamal Pande and senior officials of the BSF and other paramilitary forces.

Meanwhile, the Union Tourism and Culture Minister, Mr Jagmohan, accused the Press of glorifying terrorists by giving them prominent display in newspapers and ignoring those who were fighting the proxy war in Jammu and Kashmir.

Justifying POTO, he said a law different from the traditional law was the need of the hour as the rule of law had collapsed in Kashmir. PTIBack

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