Wednesday, December 18, 2002, Chandigarh, India

National Capital Region--Delhi


M A I N   N E W S

2 Army officers killed in encounter
Hizbul ultras gun down 4 LeT men

Srinagar, December 17
Two Army officers and a Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) activists were killed in a night-long encounter at Kudpora Achabal in south Kashmir.

Meanwhile, four terrorists of the Pakistan-based Lashker-e-Toiba (LeT) were killed in a group clash with ultras of the Hizbul Mujahideen outfit in Inshan village in the Wardwan area of Doda district last night, a report from Jammu state.

The Hizbul Mujahideen militants also snatched the weapons of the slain LeT terrorists and later fled.

Elsewhere in the valley militants attacked a police station in the heart of the city.

In other militancy-related incidents a militant was among four persons killed while the security forces averted a major tragedy in the Kashmir valley overnight.

An official spokesman said a joint search party of the security forces and the Special Operation Group (SOG) of the Jammu and Kashmir police was attacked by militants hiding in a house at Kudpora Achabal in south Kashmir district of Anantnag last evening.

The security forces tightened the cordon around the house and repeatedly asked the militants to surrender, who kept firing with automatic weapons.

The security personnel retaliated and the exchange continued till late in the night during which two Army officers were killed, the spokesman said.

Later the security forces fired mortar shells towards the house from where the militants were firing and hurling grenades at them.

Two houses were damaged in the shootout, the sources said, adding that the body of LeT militant Fayaz Ahmad Ganai alias Tariq was found in the debris of the house.

One AK rifle, two magazines and some rounds were seized, they said.

Militants fired rifle grenades towards the police station from an unknown place this afternoon when a large number of people were present in the nearby Jammu and Kashmir Bank and main branch of the State Bank of India at Residency Road here.

However, the grenades missed the intended target and exploded without causing any damage.

This was the first such attack on the police station in the heart of the city in broad daylight.

Traffic on the busy road was suspended for sometime.

Militants also attacked the house of a CPM leader Ghulam Mohamamd at Bogam in south Kashmir late last night with automatic weapons. The guards posted there also returned the fire but there were no reports of any casualties in the exchange of fire.

The spokesman said the bullet riddled body of a former Al-Jehad militant Mohammad Iqbal was recovered from Chitterpora Shopian in Pulwama district last night.

The body of Abdul Majid Khan was also recovered by the Qazigund police station officials at Malikabad in South Kashmir last evening.

A Hizbul Mujahideen militant was killed in an encounter with security forces at Branota Nullah last night.

JAMMU: Two persons, including a police head constable were killed and six others injured in a grenade attack by militants yesterday in the border town of Rajouri, the police said today.

One civilian was killed on the spot while the police Head Constable later died at the Medical College hospital in Jammu after militants threw a grenade near a market place in Rajouri town at around 6.35 pm yesterday the police said.

Head Constable Som Raj succumbed to his injuries late last night, the police said adding another seriously injured person was undergoing treatment in the same hospital. UNI, PTI


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