Violent protests rocked south Kashmir’s Pulwama district after Indian army killed three top ultras of Hizb-ul-Mujhadeen (HM) and Lashkar-e-Tiaba (LeT) in a surgical operation at Panzgam village on Friday night.Brigadier K Venugopal, commander 12 sector Rashtriya Rifles, said the operation was launched after the troops got information about the presence of three militants in a house in Panzgam.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”We got the information at 11.30pm on Friday about the presence of three militants in a house in Panzgam. At 12 midnight, we launched the operation and by 12.30am the cordon was established. We first gave the option to militants to surrender but they fired on our jawans. In the retaliatory action, troops killed three militants,” said Brig Venugopal.The slain ultras were identified as Ishfaq Ahmad Baba, Ashfaq Ahmad Dar and Haseeb Ahmad Palla. “Ashfaq Dar and Ishfaq Baba were top terrorists of HM active in Awantipura area since 2014 and involved in many terrorist related incidents. Hasib Palla of LeT had joined militancy in 2015,” said Colonel NN Joshi, defence spokesman at Srinagar.Brig Venugopal said there is a new trend that Hizbul and LeT are now moving together. “We are seeing a new trend that Hizbul and LeT are moving together which was not happening earlier,” he said.Violent clashes erupted in the parts of Pulwama district after the news of the three slain spread in the area. Police said protestors attacked a CRPF camp at Tahab with stones prompting the forces to use smoke shells and lathi charge to disperse the mob.”Miscreants pelted stones on the CRPF camp at Tahab. Later there were clashes also. Three jawans were injured in the incident,” said Rayees Mohommad Bhat, Superintendent of Police, Pulwama.Clashes later spread to other areas as protestors chanted pro-freedom slogans and pelted stones on the security forces. Several civilians are also reported to have injured in the clashes.Authorities also suspended train from Baramulla to Banihal due to the disturbances in Pulwama district as a precautionary measure. The train passes through some villages of the Pulwama district.Meanwhile, Army paid a glowing tribute to Sepoy Ramesh Chand Yadav who had attained martyrdom during an operation on the LoC in Kupwara Sector on Friday.Leading the soldiers was Chinar Corps Commander Lt Gen Satish Dua who laid wreath on the coffin of the martyt. “A group of terrorists attempting to infiltrate was intercepted by the alert troops deployed on the Line of Control. In the ensuing encounter, Sepoy Ramesh Chand Yadav sustained gunshot wounds and succumbed to injuries,” said Colonel Joshi.
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