Thursday, January 10, 2002, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

Ultra holed up in mosque shot
Tribune News Service and PTI

Srinagar, January 9
A militant belonging to the Hizbul Mujahideen was killed and another injured inside a mosque when they engaged the security forces in an exchange of fire in the Tangmarg area of Baramula district today. Minor damage was caused to the mosque, the police said.

The security forces also averted major tragedies with the timely detection of two powerful IEDs in Banihal on the Srinagar-Jammu national highway today. One of these was detected at Nachlana and another at Digdol in the Banihal area. They were later defused without causing any damage.

“Two militants of the Hizbul Mujahideen hiding in a mosque at Bamrad were asked to surrender by the security forces. When they resorted to firing, in the ensuing exchange of fire, one of them was killed,” a police spokesman stated this evening. The militant was identified as Bashir Ahmad of the same area, while another, Abdul Razaq Bhat, alias Fayaz, was apprehended in an injured condition.

Two pistols, 71 pistol rounds and 357 AK rounds were recovered from the site of the encounter.

Meanwhile, three militants of the Lashkar-e-Toiba were killed by the security forces at Gojarnar in south Kashmir district of Anantnag today. An official spokesman said this evening that a joint search party of the Army and the Special Operation Group of the Jammu and Kashmir Police was fired upon by the militants at Gojarnar in Anantnag.

The security forces returned fire and in the ensuing gun battle all three militants were killed.

Meanwhile, a report from Jammu said three militants attacked an Army’s Animal Transport Company (ATC) unit in Poonch but no loss of life or damage to property was reported, official sources said today.

Two militants in police uniform and another in khaki fired indiscriminately at the Army unit last night without causing any damage, the sources said. The militants escaped under cover of darkness.

Meanwhile, a suspected militant and police constable were killed while they were on their way to Gandoh tehsil of Doda district last evening, police sources said.

The police was escorting the militant after his arrest and was being brought to a police station at Gandoh. However, the militant tried to escape and in the process fell down into a deep gorge along with the constable.

Meanwhile, Indian forces today fired at a Pakistani plane which intruded 2 km into Indian airspace in R.S. Pura secor of the Jammu region on a spying mission.

The plane flying at a height of 5,000 feet remained in Indian airspace for about 15 minutes before returning to Pakistan this afternoon, said BSF sources.

The plane flew inside the Indian territory at Budhwar, Bule Chak and Jabowal border outposts at 4 p.m. in R.S. Pura sector, about 25 km from here, the sources said.Back


US refuelling plane crashes in Pak

Washington, January 9
A US military plane crashed today in Pakistan, the White House says.

White House spokesman Ari Fleischer said the aircraft, a KC-130 transport, went down in Pakistan and the Defense Department was investigating. President George W. Bush was aware of the crash, Mr Fleischer said.

He provided no information about a possible cause or casualties.

At the Pentagon, officials said initial reports were sketchy and unconfirmed. The officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the KC-130 probably was a Marine Corps aircraft.

Lieut Col David Lapan, a Pentagon spokesman, said, “There may have been an accident involving an aircraft in Pakistan”. He said he did not know whether it was a KC-130 or whether anyone was injured or killed. APBack

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