Srinagar, Sep 14: Security forces on Thursday morning resumed the cordon and search operation against the terrorists hiding in the dense forest in Kokernag area of south Kashmir’s Anantnag district that were behind the killing of three senior officers of Army and Police on Wednesday.
According to the police, two terrorists were hiding in the area and a contact was established on Thursday.
The area of operation is dotted with thick jungles and slopes, providing the hiding militants a cover, officials said.
The operation was halted for the night. The security forces pressed into service drones and helicopters to maintain a vigil of the encounter site. Additional troops have been rushed to fortify the cordon in the area.
The Chinar Corps Commander Lt Gen Rajeev Ghai and Rashtriya Rifles’ Victor Force commander Maj Gen Balbir Singh have already visited the encounter site to boost the morale of troops in operations, officials said.
Defence Public Relations Officer, Lt Col Suneel Bartwal said GOC 15 Corps and GOC Victor Force are closely monitoring the operations. Terrorists will not be spared. All new generation weapons and devices being used Drones including Herons pressed into action, he said.
Meanwhile, J&K Police said on its official handle on X: “In solemn tribute to the valour of Col Manpreet Singh, Major Ashish Dhonchak and DSP Humayun Bhat, who laid down their lives leading from the front during this ongoing operation, our forces persist with unwavering resolve as they encircle 2 LET terrorists, including Uzair Khan.”
Three officers, Colonel Manpreet Singh, Major Ashish Dhonak and Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Humayun Bhat, were killed during the initial exchange of fired by the hiding terrorists on September 13.
Meanwhile, security forces airlifted the bodies of Colonel Manpreet Singh and Major Ashish Dhonak from the encounter site in Anantnag district on September 14, a day after they were killed along with a DSP in a gunfight with terrorists. The last rites of DSP Humayun Muzammil Bhat were performed in Budgam on Wednesday evening.
A senior Army officer told Rising Kashmir that search operation was resumed this morning and contact was established with hiding terrorists in dense forests.
“Both Army and Jammu and Kashmir Police are being provided support by small quadcopters and larger drones to keep an eye on the entire area. Technical and Human intelligence is being used to trace out to hiding terrorists,” he said.
The officer said currently firing is stopped from both sides, more troops have been deployed to trace the hiding terrorists. We had established a cordon around the area, and all routes leading to the encounter site are now sealed off. Presently, there is no firing from either side, he said.
The officer further stated that the operation remains in progress, with additional troops arriving and the cordon being further. Two local terrorists are believed to be holed up inside the dense forests. Additional lighting has been deployed in the area to facilitate the operation, he added.
On Wednesday evening, Kashmir DGP Dilbag Singh said that perpetrators of the criminal act would be brought to justice soon.