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Protest against killing of 3 in ‘fake’ encounter
CM’s meeting with Army, police officers today
Srinagar, January 18
Demonstrations were held for the second day today against the killing of three persons in an encounter with the security forces in the Shopian area of Pulwama district on Tuesday morning.

Security alert to ensure incident-free R-Day
Jammu, January 18
Though the temperature has fallen to subzero level in Jammu and Kashmir, security forces continue to be on guard for ensuring incident-free Republic Day functions.



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Protest against killing of 3 in ‘fake’ encounter
CM’s meeting with Army, police officers today
Tribune News Service

Srinagar, January 18
Demonstrations were held for the second day today against the killing of three persons in an encounter with the security forces in the Shopian area of Pulwama district on Tuesday morning. The police and security forces claimed that all three were militants who were killed in an ambush on Tuesday morning and from whom arms and ammunition were recovered.

Those killed were identified as Abdul Wali Khattana and Maulvi Mohammad Farooq, residents of Chattergul in Anantnag district, and Mohammad Farooq from Doda district, reportedly affiliated with a Madrasa in south Kashmir.

The protesters alleged that the militants had been apprehended earlier and killed in a fake encounter. According to senior civil officials here, the district administration was looking into the allegations of the killing of the three persons, while the Deputy Commissioner of Pulwama district has constituted a team to look into incidents. The police said that two SLRs, two magazines, 38 rounds, one wireless set, one pistol, one magazine, four rounds and a hand grenade were recovered from the site of encounter.

Chief Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad has called a meeting of the Unified Command of senior civil and police and security officers in Jammu tomorrow in view of the incident. The incident of the alleged killing of three civilians in a fake encounter follows the death of a youth from Sumbal area of Baramula district due to torture by security forces two days earlier.

Another youth, Mushtaq Ahmad Ganai, who had been picked up by the Army during searches from Adlach, Pahalgam in Anantnag district on January 9, had died while in custody and his body was handed over to the police four days later. The Chief Minister, assuring the public of no more custodial killings, has already ordered a time-bound inquiry into the killing of Adlach youth.

Defence spokesman Lt-Col V.K. Batra denying reports of the killing of three civilians in the Shopian area, said that they were militants killed in an ambush by the police and security forces. He denied that the three were killed in a fake encounter and added that the Army and police challenged them. The militants opened initial fire on the ambush party that ensued the encounter, he said. The defence spokesman said that one of the militants had been questioned by the local Army officers earlier, following which the militant had gone underground. He claimed that the SLRs recovered from the site of encounter had been snatched by militants from a police party in the Shopian area on January 12.

Elsewhere, two persons, including a militant, were killed in separate incidents and arms and ammunition recovered in Jammu and Kashmir since yesterday.

One militant of the Harkat-ul-Mujahideen was killed in an encounter with 44 RR in Shopian town of Pulwama district today. He has been identified as Abu Hureira, a Defence spokesman said.

The police recovered the bullet-riddled body of Mohammad Altaf Teli from a well on the outskirts of Khrew village in Pulwama district.

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Security alert to ensure incident-free R-Day
M.L. Kak

Jammu, January 18
Though the temperature has fallen to subzero level in Jammu and Kashmir, security forces continue to be on guard for ensuring incident-free Republic Day functions.

Chief Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad, convened a meeting of legislators belonging to the Jammu district here yesterday for enlisting their cooperation in making the main Republic Day function in the winter capital an impressive show by attracting large number of people, the actual brunt of sanitizing sports stadii and other places, where the functions are to be held, falls on the shoulders of security forces.

After a brief lull, terrorist strikes have gone up in the past couple of days across the state even though traditional routes of infiltration across the 750 km-long Line of Control lie buried under snow.

Security forces, maintain that in the past couple of days, infiltration has gone down as militants awaiting to infiltrate in to the Indian territory have been asked to go back to their training camps following heavy snowfall.

But, according to intelligence agencies, militant organisations had found fresh hideouts even in Jammu division to disrupt Republic Day celebrations.

A senior Army commander said here in Jammu, the security forces are already geared up for the annual drill to ensure incident-free celebrations.

A major tragedy was averted in Jammu division when security forces foiled militants’ attempt at disrupting Republic Day celebrations and recovered huge cache of arms and ammunitions from two locations in Raipur near Satwari on the outskirts of Jammu city.

At a press conference on Tuesday in Jammu, GOC, Tiger Division, and Major General Jasbir Singh said that militants had planned strikes at strategic military installations, Jammu airport and venue of the Republic Day parade in Maulana Azad stadium to create terror here.

Major General said that a few foreign mercenaries were planning to engineer attacks and we were on the look out for them. We would not allow them to create panic in the winter capital, we would catch them.

Meanwhile, security along the 150 km-long Udhampur-Pathankot railway track has been further beefed up with the setting up of the separate beats to ensure safety of the strategic railway track. A multi-tier security blanket has been thrown in and around base camp of Vaishno Devi shrine near Katra besides stepping up vigil around the Trikuta hills.

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