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In Jammu Kashmir's Handwara: Colonel, Major Among 5 Killed In Standoff Between Terrorists
Two senior army officers - a colonel and a major- are among the five security personnel killed in action in encounter in Jammu and Kashmir's Handwara after a major gun-battle.
The Encounters In J&K's Handwara Began Yesterday.
New Delhi: In Jammu and Kashmir's Kupwara district, a colonel and a major, Two senior army officers were amongst five security personnel killed in action during an encounter, which began on Saturday and continued the late night.
A police officer and two soldiers were also a part of the five-member team that came under heavy fire from terrorists.
The stand-off between the holed up terrorists and the security forces continued on Sunday in Kupwara district although the operation against holed up terrorists was started early on Saturday.
The operation was initially started in the Rajwar area of Handwara tehsil by the security forces including the Rashtriya Rifles and the special operations group of local police.
This followed information that two to three terrorists were hiding in one of the houses in Chanjimulla village, 15 km from Handwara town.
After surrounding the hideout and plugging all escape routes, the terrorists hiding in the house were challenged and subsequently engaged in sustained gunfire.
Decorated army officer Colonel Ashutosh Sharma, Major Anuj Sood, Naik Rajesh Kumar and Lance Naik Dinesh from the 21 Rashtriya Rifles unit were a part of the security operation; police officer Shakeel Ahmad Qazi was also with them.
Director-General of Police Dilbagh Singh told news agency PTI, "Sad to inform that five brave personnel including Colonel Ashutosh Sharma, Major Anuj Sood and sub-inspector of JKP Shakeel Qazi were martyred in the line of duty."
A source said, a major and two other soldiers in addition to a sub-inspector and a constable of the SOG decided to challenge the holed up terrorists through room intervention braving great danger to their lives.
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Twitter gave rich eulogies to the army officers and security personnel killed in the encounter. "The loss of our soldiers and security personnel in Handwara(J&K) is deeply disturbing and painful. They showed exemplary courage in their fight against the terrorists and made supreme sacrifice while serving the country. We will never forget their bravery and sacrifice."
The loss of our soldiers and security personnel in Handwara(J&K) is deeply disturbing and painful. They showed exemplary courage in their fight against the terrorists and made supreme sacrifice while serving the country. We will never forget their bravery and sacrifice.— Rajnath Singh (@rajnathsingh) May 3, 2020
Commanding Officer leading from the front along with other personnel of the unit and J&K Police have laid down their lives, living upto the motto; Service Before Self.— ADG PI - INDIAN ARMY (@adgpi) May 3, 2020
Amarinder Singh, Punjab Chief Minister has declared a government job and Rs 10 lakh compensation for the family of the soldier Naik Rajesh Kumar, from his state, who was a part of the Handwara operation.
My deep condolences to the family of NK Rajesh Kumar, 21 RR, from village Rajrana, District Mansa, who laid down his life for the Nation while fighting militants in Handwara. A Government job and Rs. 10 Lakh as Ex-Gratia will be given as a mark of respect to the Next of Kin. pic.twitter.com/DqsAexcCaj— Capt.Amarinder Singh (@capt_amarinder) May 3, 2020
The last reports said there was a fierce exchange of gunfire between the intervening security personnel and the hiding terrorists.
"Since the last one and a half hour, there has been no exchange of firing at the encounter site.
"Para commandos of 9 Para regiment have been brought in to secure the security personnel and preparations are underway for the final assault," sources said.
Army and police have cautioned reporters not to speculate about the final outcome of the operation since it is still continuing.
Security forces have strongly dispelled speculative reports about the safety of the security personnel who chose to embark on room intervention of the house where the terrorists were holed up.
Reports now suggest the number of holed up terrorists could be more than three.
"One dead body is lying outside the house where the terrorists are holed up, but its identification can only be made after the operation ends," a source said.
(Input From IANS)