5 militants gunned down in Kashmir encounters
New Delhi: Five separatists were killed in Kashmir’s Budgam and Baramulla districts on Thursday, taking the count of militants gunned down this year by security forces to 200, police and paramilitary forces said.
The Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) said the militants, who belonged to the Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) and Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) outfits, were killed in two different cordon-and-search operations (CASO) carried out by the CRPF, Indian Army and the Jammu and Kashmir police.
Four JeM terrorists were gunned down in Budgam and one LeT militant in Sopore.
The state police said this was the first time in the last seven years that counter-insurgency operations in the Valley had led to 200 militants being gunned down.
“By the collective effort of Jammu and Kashmir police, Indian Army, CRPF and the people of Kashmir, we have led to the neutralisation of more than 200 terrorists in 2017 alone,” S.P. Vaid, director general of police of Jammu and Kashmir said on Twitter.
Defence experts said that security forces had met with a large measure of success in tackling militancy in the Valley this year.
“Even though things are much better now than they were in the 1990s, when there would be at least 1,500 militants holed up in the Valley, security forces have done a great job of tackling militancy which had seen a spike over the last one year. However, now there are fewer militants in the region,” said H.S. Panag, a defence expert.