Militants target town ahead of Eid: Policeman killed in Poonch twin assaults


A police constable was killed and five others — two Armymen, two police personnel, and a civilian — were injured after two groups of heavily armed militants attacked Poonch town on Sunday morning.

Three militants were killed by the Army and police after daylong encounters at two locations. Searches were under way at both locations to rule out the possibility of any more militants still hiding out.

One group of militants was holed up inside a private building next to the Army’s brigade headquarters at Allapeer; another in an under-construction building opposite the office of the district police chief.

Inspector General of Police Johny William, who continues to hold charge as DIG of the twin border districts of Rajouri and Poonch as he awaits a new posting, said, “We had got information about the presence of terrorists in the morning. Unfortunately, we have lost one of our brave men in the firefight with terrorists. Our searches are in progress and we cannot say the operation is over.”

There was a potential hostage situation at Joginder Mahal, the private building next to the brigade HQ. The militants were holding Haji Nazir Mir and his wife Mumtaz Mir, members of the well-known Mir family, which has old connections to theCongress in the border district. Haji Nazir Mir is a cousin of the Congress MLC Jahangir Hussain Mir, deputy chairman of the Jammu and Kashmir Legislative Council.

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