Three terrorists were killed Sunday in an encounter with security forces in Kulgam district of Jammu and Kashmir, while six civilians lost their lives in a blast following the gunfight there, police said.
All photographs: Umar Ganie/Rediff.com
Security forces launched a cordon and search operation in Laroo area of Kulgam district in south Kashmir following specific information about the presence of terrorists in the area, a police official said.
While conducting searches the terrorists fired upon them, he said, adding three terrorists were killed in the ensuing encounter.
He said the identity and group affiliation of the slain terrorists is being ascertained.
The officials said immediately after the gunfight ended and the forces withdrew from the spot, civilians rushed to the encounter site where an explosive substance went off resulting in death of six civilians.
“Despite requests to not visit the spot till thorough search is done for explosives, several civilians visited the encounter site immediately after the operation. While they were there, some explosive substance went off, resulting in on spot death of a civilian and injuries to several others,” the official said.
He said the injured persons were rushed to various hospitals for treatment but five of them succumbed to the injuries.
“In total, six civilians were killed due to the blast,” the official said.
He said clashes broke out between groups of youth and security forces in the area and were going on when last reports came in.
“Police had to use some force to quell the protests and about two dozen persons were injured in the clashes,” the official said.
Advisor to the Governor, K Vijay Kumar, and Director General of Police Dilbag Singh have expressed regret over the loss of civilian lives at the encounter site and conveyed their profound condolences to the bereaved families.
He said such sites should be avoided by civilians till they are properly sanitised.