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SHOPIAN: At least two militants and a civilian were killed during a gunfight between Forces and militants in Kundalan village of Shopian district in South Kashmir while several dozen protesters suffered injuries during violent protests . The gunfight raged after joint forces including 34 Rashtriya Rifles of Indian Army, CRPF, SOG cordoned off the village after receiving inputs about the presence of militants there.


The fierce gun fight left two militants dead. Srinagar based Defence spokesperson, Colonel Rajesh Kalia told CNS that two militants were neutralized in the attack while two weapons were recovered from the site. Reports said that two houses in which the militants were present was blasted to the ground. The encounter sparked violent protests when protesters tried to advance towards encounter site to help trapped militants escape. The Forces used live ammunition resulting in the injuries of over 100 protesters.


Official sources said that an 18 year old civilian identified as Tamsheel Ahmed Khan son of Khurshid Ahmed, a resident of Vehil Shopian succumbed to his injuries. He had received a bullet in his head. Giving details, Chief Medical Officer, Shopian Dr Abdul Raheed said that 123 civilians were brought to district hospital Shopian, Harman and Vehil hospitals. 6 among them had bullet injuries and were referred to Srinagar for advanced treatment, he said, adding 17 people with critical pellet injuries were also referred to different Srinagar hospitals and 14 among them had pellet injuries in their eyes.


Giving details on the customary condition of anonymity, a doctor at District Hospital Kulgam, said that they received 13 injured civilians. “One among them had bullet injury while 6 were hit by pellets in their eyes, all of the seven were referred to Srinagar,” he said. Meanwhile, mobile internet service has been snapped in twin districts of Pulwama and Shopian while the situation in both districts are reported to be tense.


A police official said that pursuing credible leads regarding the presence of terrorists in Kundallan area of District Shopian, a joint patrol of the security forces launched searches in area in the wee hours today. “As the searches were going on, militants hiding inside the house fired upon the search party. The search party in their guarded response fired back thereby establishing contact with the terrorists leading to an encounter. Some of the civilians in the nearby houses were quickly evacuated by the security forces.”


“During the encounter all the hiding terrorists were eliminated successfully by the joint patrol of the security forces. The killed terrorists were identified as Sameer Ahmad Sheikh a local and Babar from Pakistan. They were affiliated with proscribed terror outfit JeM.” “Sameer Ahmad Sheikh son of Ghulam Mohammad Sheikh resident Rawalpora Shopian was a school dropout and had joined the militants outfit JeM after he was reported missing from his home since April 2018.”


“On the basis of documents available the other terrorist has been identified as Babar a JeM commander of Pakistan origin. They were involved in many attacks on the security establishments and civilian atrocities.” The police handout that some civilians were also injured in cross firing at the site of encounter who were later evacuated to the hospital for medical attention. One of the injured persons later succumbed to his injuries while the other injured are stated to be stable now. “Some arms and ammunition were also recovered from the encounter site. Police has registered a case and investigation has been initiated in the instant matter.