In a major blow to the Pakistan based militant outfit Lashker-e-Taiba, security forces here killed its Valley-based commander Naveed Jatt, who was allegedly involved in the killing of noted journalist Shujaat Bukhari.
Confirming the killing of Jatt, the Jammu and Kashmir police chief, Dilbagh Singh said, " yes, we were successful in neutralising Jatt in Chattergam area of Budgam. Now, we'll be writing to the home ministry to inform Pakistan to take back the body."
Naveed Jatt, a top Lashkar terrorist, who was on the wanted list of the police, had escaped from police custody on February 6 following a brief shootout that claimed the lives of two policemen at SMHS hospital in Srinagar.
Naveed Jatt, a suspect in the killing of editor of English daily ‘Rising Kashmir’ Shujaat Bukhari on June 14 outside his office in press enclave, The gunmen were seen carrying weapons in a sack on security footage.
Police had blamed Jatt and two local militants for the crime. One was those allegedly involved was Azad Malik alias Dada. Malik was killed in an encounter with security forces in southern Shopian district on November 23.
Naveed Jatt alias Hanzalla was born in Multan Pakistan. He was part of terrorist Ajmal Kasab group at a Madrassa in Pakistan where he had undergone arms training.
In October 2012, “Naveed Jatt along with his associates had crossed over into the valley of Kashmir. He had a long history of terror crime records since 2012. He was involved in killing of an ASI in Pulwama on May 2013, series of grenade attacks on security forces and was involved in killing of CRPF personnel at Awneera Shopian in August 2013,” as per police records.
Jatt was also involved in conspiring and executing several bank robberies and terror attacks in South Kashmir including attack on Court Complex Pulwama on March 2014 in which two policemen were martyred, attack on polling party in Shopian.
In June 2014, “Naveed was apprehended by police, however, he managed to escape from the custody in the month of February 2018 while he was being taken to SMHS hospital Srinagar for medical treatment from Central Jail Srinagar.”
Incriminating materials including arms and ammunition were recovered from the site of Chatergam Budgam encounter. All these materials have been taken for case records and probe their complicity in other terror cases. Police has registered a case and initiated investigation in the matter.
Meanwhile, JKP has issued advisory asking local population not to venture near encounter zone as it could turn dangerous
“Citizens are requested not to venture inside the encounter zone since such an area can prove dangerous due to stray explosive materials. People are requested to cooperate with police till the area is completely sanitized and cleared of all the explosives materials if any,”.
It is pertinent to mention that, this was the sixth anti-militancy operation in the Valley since last week. So far, 21 militants, including senior commanders of the LeT and the Hizb-ul-Mujahideen, and three soldiers have been killed in these encounters.
On 27th Nov, two Lashkar-e-Taiba militants and an army soldier were killed in a gunfight in southern Kulgam district. A top commander identified as Shakir Ahmed from the Zakir Musa-led Ansar Ghazwat-ul-Hind outfit, was killed in a gunfight with forces in Reshipora village of Tral in Pulwama on the same day.
On 25th Nov, six militants, including Abass Sheikh, and a soldier were killed in a fierce encounter in south Kashmir’s Shopian district. Sheikh was allegedly involved in the killing of a young army officer, Lt. Omar Fayaz.