Kochi: R. Reshi, an Army major from Kerala suffered a bullet injury during an encounter with militants in Jammu and Kashmir on Sunday. He was rushed to the base hospital where his condition was stated to be out of danger.
Major Reshi and another soldier sneaked up to the house in which the militants were holed up, to set an IED in the morning after a night-long encounter. They were apparently spotted as one of the militants fired at Reshi. His upper jaw and nose was injured, but the bullet did not pierce his brain. His companion returned fire quickly enabling the duo to return.
Two militants and a policeman were killed in the fierce gun battle at Tral in south Kashmir which lasted for nearly 15 hours. One of the militants was a Hizbul Mujahideen operative identified as Aaquib Bhat, popularly known as Aaquib Maulvi, who was active in the area for three years. The other militant, Saif-ul-lah alias Osama, was a Pakistani terrorist working with Jaish-e-Mohammed, official sources said.
A police constable, Manzoor Ahmed Niak of Uri, was killed after he took on the militants head on during the operation which began at 7 pm on Saturday night and continued till 6.30 am, officials said. A holed-up Bhat had called his father in the wee hours of Sunday and bid his final goodbye to him, they said.
He was a local resident and his ancestral house was at Hyena in Tral area itself.
Security forces had received an input about the presence of two militants in the residence of a carpenter after which police, army and CRPF threw a cordon around it.
The first contact was established with the militants at around 7 pm and after that there was an intermittent exchange of fire. Tral town, which had shot into prominence because of Hizbul Mujahideen militant Burhan Wani, was tense and people had started pouring on to the streets to try and provide an escape for the holed-up militants. Stones were hurled at the security forces engaged in counter-insurgency operations but the situation was brought under control by police and CRPF who chased the mob away, officials said.