J&K: Two LeT Militants Surrender During Encounter After Family Appeals
Representational Image. File Image
Srinagar: Two militants surrendered in front of security forces during an encounter in the Hadigam area of South Kashmir's Kulgam on Wednesday, the first such incident reported from the region this year so far.
The two militants, who were affiliated with the Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) outfit, laid down their arms after responding to an appeal from their families, who were brought by the forces to the encounter site for their persuasion.
The encounter ended within hours following the surrender from the militants, who were both identified as locals and recent recruits. The police later said that they recovered incriminating materials, arms and ammunition from the duo.
The duo were identified as Kafeel Ahmad Mir son of Javid Ahmad Mir resident of Mirpora Qaimoh and Nadeem Abbas Bhat son of Mohammad Abbas Bhat resident of Reshipora Qaimoh.
The Inspector-General of Police (Kashmir) Vijay Kumar made an appeal to the families, especially the parents of the militants, to persuade those who have joined militant ranks to surrender.
“If every parent appeals to their terrorist sons to shun the path of violence, whether they are trapped during live encounters or have joined the terrorism, many lives can be saved as in today's encounter two lives were saved," Kumar was quoted as saying.
So far, 122 militants, including 32 foreigners, have been killed in Kashmir so far this year. Last year, in 2021, as many as 55 militants – which included only two foreigners – were killed in the same period. Out of those killed so far, over 77 are from LeT, while over 26 were believed to have been affiliated with Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) outfit.
The Kashmir valley witnessed heightened military operations against militants after a spate of violence hit the region since October last year, in which several civilians were also killed in targeted killings. In the month of June, as many as 28 militants were killed across Kashmir, many of them from the LeT and were believed to be behind these targeted killings.
Since the abrogation of Article 370 in August 2019, over 500 militants have been killed in the valley, dozens have been arrested, and scores have been booked for aiding militancy. Srinagar, which emerged as one of the key areas of militant violence since then, has been witnessing heightened anti-insurgency measures. The J&K police have sealed homes of at least five families in the capital city, alleging that they harboured militants at their respective residences.
The security cover in and around Srinagar and along the national highway, which is en route to Amarnath Yatra cave, has been increased significantly in view of apprehensions of a possible attack on the devotees by militant outfits. Traffic and public movement at several places are often halted to allow devotees to pass at these junctions, especially in South Kashmir areas.
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