Encounter ensues in south Kashmir

Saul Franklin
April 12, 2018

An Army soldier was killed and two others injured in an encounter with militants in south Kashmir districts of Kulgam, where security force have called off the operation after the ultras managed to escape following clashes that left four civilians dead and 50 others injured on Wednesday.

Police said one soldier died and at least two other soldiers were injured in the battle.

Police issued a statement saying the civilian deaths took place as a result of crossfire between the militants and security forces.

The security forces opened fire on stone-pelters who, they alleged, tried to disrupt the operation against militants, causing critical injuries to several persons.

Earlier, another civilian, Sharjeel Sheikh, 28, was killed when clashes erupted at Wani Mohalla in Khudwani between protesters and the security forces.

Meanwhile, the gun-fight outside the house where the militants were holed up continued with bullets flying in every direction, they said.

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Sarjeel Ahmad (25), Faisal Ilahi (14) and Bilal Ahamad Tantray (16) succumbed to injuries at a hospital, they said. Four men were killed and at least 40 civilians injured, officials said.

Almost 50 injured persons having bullet, pellet and injures due to teargas shells have been admitted in various hospitals of south Kashmir and Srinagar.

Authorities ordered closure of all schools and colleges in Kulgam and Internet services have been suspended in south Kashmir.

Most Kashmiris support the rebels' cause while also participating in civilian street protests against Indian control.

"Joint Resistance Leadership", the alliance of key separatist leaders, has called for a Valley-wide shutdown on Thursday to mourn and protest civilian deaths in Kulgam.

Srinagar (Jammu and Kashmir), Apr 11 (ANI): Wreath laying ceremony of SPR S Gunakara Rao, who lost his life in the ongoing Kulgam encounter was held in Srinagar today.

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