Shopian Carnage: Five Militants, As Many Civilians Killed; Toll 10

SRINAGAR, MAY 06: Five militants and as many civilians were killed in a gunfight and ensuing clashes with government forces in south Kashmir’s Shopian and Kulgam districts on Sunday.

Director General of Police SP Vaid said that five militants were killed in a gunfight with forces in Badigam village of Shopian district. The slain included top Hizb commander Saddam Padder and the Kashmir University professor Muhammad Rafi Bhat, who was reported missing on Friday.

“Encounter concluded at Badigam Zainapora Shopian,” he said on Twitter. He said five bodies of militants have been recovered.

The gunfight had broke out at Badigam village after army’s 44 RR launched the cordon-and-search operation in the area.

Army’s 23 Para Commandos, 34 RR, 3 RR, CRPF, and SOG were rushed as reinforcements after the contact with militants was established.

In the initial firefight one SOG man, Anil Kumar and an army soldier of 44 RR were injured.

As soon as the gunfight began, youth took to streets and clashes with the forces, in a bid to help the trapped militants escape.

Government forces fired live ammunition, pellets and tear gas into the protesters, resulting into injuries to dozens of them.

A youth, identified as Asif Ahmad Mir of Rohomoo Pulwama, was critically injured after suffering a bullet injury in his head. He was shifted to SMHS hospital in Srinagar where he succumbed.

Four more civilians were killed as forces fired at protesters in Chitragam and Behibagh areas of Shopian and Kulgam districts, respectively.

The slain were identified as Zubair Ahmad Negroo of Ayangund Rajpora, Yasir of Shopian, Adil Ahmad, a resident of Ashmuji in Kulgam district and Sajad Ahmad of Verinag Dooru.

Four more civilians were injured in army firing at Chitragam.

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