Hizbul commander, seven ultras killed in Kashmir
In a major success for our security forces which are fighting Pakistan-backed terrorists in the Kashmir valley, heavy damage was inflicted on the ultras on Saturday. Eight of them were killed during the day, including Sabzar Ahmad Bhat who had succeeded Hizbul Mujahideen (HM) commander Burhan Wani following his killing last July. Bhat was gunned down along with another terrorist at Soimoh village in Tral, Pulwama district, about 36 km from Srinagar, during a cordon and search operation following specific information about the presence of terrorists there.
Jammu and Kashmir police chief S P Vaid said that Bhat was among the two ultras killed in the encounter. They were holed up inside a house, opened fire at security personnel as they closed in on their hideout and were killed in retaliatory fire.
The Army also foiled a major infiltration bid from across the Line of Control (LoC) in Rampur sector, killing six militants. There was a fierce exchange of fire after the troops noticed some "suspicious movement" in the early hours.
On being challenged, the militants opened fire, and in the encounter that ensued, six infiltrators were felled, the Army said. A civilian was also reported dead in cross-fire at Soimoh village during the encounter in which Bhat was killed.
News of the killing of Bhat, who reportedly used to enjoy wide popularity among sections of the people, spread like wildfire and violence erupted at more than 50 places in the valley. Stone-pelting youth were out on the streets in Srinagar, Tral and several big and small towns in Kashmir, attacking security forces.
According to an official at sub-district hospital in Tral, 19 injured people were admitted there. While six persons had bullet injuries, 13 others were hit by pellets.
A teenager, Samir Ahmad, was hit by a tear smoke shell in the head in Mattan area of Anantnag district during clashes between security forces and protesters. He was rushed to a hospital here in a critical condition.
Five persons were injured in Shopian district during similar protests, he said adding the number of those injured across the valley might go up by the end of the day as clashes were reported from many parts.
Mobile Net services suspended in Valley
Mobile internet services were suspended in Kashmir Valley on Saturday as a precautionary measure in the wake of killing of Hizbul Mujahideen commander Sabzar Ahmad Bhat in an encounter with security forces in Tral. Mobile internet services have been snapped across the Valley since the afternoon, officials said. However, BSNL broadband service was functioning normally, they said. The officials said services were suspended as a precautionary measure.