Update at 3:10 pm: The three (JeM) militants killed in Kulgam encounter have been identified as Shahid ul Islam Tantray of T.wangam in Shopian, Yazil Makroo of Arwani in Kulgam, and Zubair Lone of Aashto in Kulgam.
Update at 2:24 pm: Former Jammu and Kashmir CM, Omar Abdullah has tweeted to express discontent on the deaths of civilians during the Kulgam encounter:
Update: Two civilian dead bodies have been dispatched from SMHS Hospital in Srinagar. Two more civilians are reported to be critical.
Three terrorists have been neutralized by the security forces on Sunday, following an encounter during the Cordon and Search Operation launched in Larro village in the Kulgam district of South Kashmir. However, reports have revealed that one civilian has died and a number are injured during the police encounter. According to Jammu and Kashmir police, the civilians ventured into the encounter site despite several warnings to not do so till the fires were doused a search for explosives had been conducted. Heavy explosives then did go off, causing one fatality and a number of injuries.
“Civilians visited the encounter site immediately after the operation, in spite of several requests to not to visit the site since a thorough search is to be made for explosives once flames douse. They did not listen and thus, visited the spot immediately after forces withdrew and some explosive substance went off resulting in injuries to civilians. One civilian namely Ubaid Laway, son of Mohd Maqbool Laway of Laroo has unfortunately died. We further, request them not to visit the site again”, J&K Police asserted.
Following the encounter, DGP of Jammu and Kashmir expressed his regret over the injuries caused to the civilians.
"You all know the situation. We have been investigating the terrorists in the area. Today's operation has just ended. I have been told that three terrorists have been killed. We are still determining the identity of the terrorists. I feel that the situation in South Kashmir has improved over the period of time. We do regret the unfortunate deaths and injuries caused to the civilians,” Director General of Police, Dibag Singh said on the encounter in Kulgam's Larro area.
This incident has come days after three terrorists were gunned down in the Fateh Kadal area of Srinagar by a joint team of Indian Armed Forces and CRPF. The three terrorists who were brought down by the forces were identified to be Faiaz (LeT), Bangru( LeT) and Raees Abibulah ( OGW, r/o Magam). Clashes had erupted near the gunfight site with youth pelting the forces with stones who responded by firing tear gas. This was the first encounter reported in the valley after municipal election began in J&K.