Tuesday, May 27, 2003, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

Five of Gujjar family shot dead
Tribune News Service & PTI

Jammu, May 26
An entire family of five persons, including three children, was mercilessly killed by the terrorists at Keri-Khwas village in Rajouri district today.

This is the second incident in the district in the past one week.

Reports said that a Gujjar, Kesar Din, and his wife, Rakia, along with their three sons, were shot dead by the terrorists, who forcibly entered their house in the wee hours. The terrorists first asked Rakia to serve them some food and then killed all members of the family. They also set their house on fire.

The sons of Kesar Din have been identified as Mohammad Khan (13), Raj Mohammad (11) and Mohammad Shakeel (8).

The charred bodies were extricated this morning by the police with the help of villagers. It is being said that the terrorists suspected Kesar Din of police informer.

Earlier on May 19, the terrorists butchered six members of a family, including two children.

These incidents indicate that the terrorists were trying to create a scare among the residents of these areas in a bid to find shelter as the Army has launched a massive operation to flush them out in the neighbouring district of Poonch.

SRINAGAR: The Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister, Mufti Mohammad Sayeed and the Deputy Chief Minister, Mr Mangat Ram Sharma, have condemned the killing of family members.

In a statement here on Monday, the Chief Minister said the killing was a deliberate attempt to vitiate the atmosphere of peace.

The Deputy Chief Minister described the killing as senseless acts which needed to be condemned by all right thinking persons.

Meanwhile, four persons, including three militants, were killed in an encounter even as five militants were arrested in separate operations and huge cache of arms, including 110 kg of RDX, were recovered in Jammu and Kashmir, a police spokesman said today.

Three militants were killed five according to UNI in a gunfight which broke out when the police assisted by the security forces raided a hideout at Danga Wali in the Surankote area of Poonch district in the Jammu region last night, the spokesman said.

He said special police officer (SPO) Abdul Hamid also lost his life during the encounter. Three AK assault rifles were recovered from the killed ultras.

The security forces arrested a top Jamiat-ul-Mujahideen militant Bashir Ahmad Lone, alias Bilal, from Ajar in the Bandipora area of Baramula district in north Kashmir and recovered 110 kg of RDX, four AK assault rifles, eight hand grenades, nine under-barrel grenade launchers and a large quantity of ammunition and documents from two hideouts which were later destroyed, the spokesman said.

He said a self-styled Tehreek-ul-Mujahideen company commander Gulzar Ahmad Kuchhay, alias Bashara, was arrested by the security forces along with a pistol, two grenades and a wireless set during search operations at Kungwatan in Anantnag district of south Kashmir.

Three more militants were arrested during searches at Manzgam-Shopian in Pulwama district, Sangarwain in Badgam district and Sangram Bhatta in Doda district yesterday. Two rifles, a pistol, four grenades, two wireless sets and some ammunition were recovered from them.


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