Militant killings, arrests on in Jammu and Kashmir
The J&K police arrested Hizbul Mujahidin militants along with a decorated police officer, Davinder Singh, on Saturday. More arrests and killings of militants have followed the incident.
The arrests and killings of top local militants since last week in Jammu and Kashmir must have cheered the security forces up even though the arrest of a senior police official may have blindsided the security establishment.
On January 11, forces achieved a major success when they collared Hizbul Mujahidin commander Naveed Mushtaq alias Naveed Babu along with his associate, Altaf Ahmad and an Over Groundworker (OGW) Irfan Ahmad Mir.
A decorated police officer, Davinder Singh was also caught with the trio. Singh was allegedly ferrying the militants out of Valley.
“The news was a real shocker”, said a few police officials, while reacting to the Singh’s arrest.
A day after the incident, three militants including Hizbul Mujahideen commander Umar Fayaz Lone, who used Hamad Khan as nom-de-guerre, were killed in a fire fight with security forces in Gulshanpora village of Tral town, some 32 km south of Srinagar. On the same day, police arrested another militant from Kokernag, Anantnag. Another Hizbul Mujahideen militant commander was killed last afternoon in Doda district of Jammu.
The killing of both Babu and Khan is seen as very significant for the forces. Babu, a cop turned militant, was a resident of Nazneenpora village, some 4 km from Shopian town. He worked in the state police for nearly four years.
In 2017, Babu fled with four rifles from his place of posting in Budgam and signed up for the Hizbul Mujahidin. He rose through the ranks of the outfit to become its district commander. He was accused of killing the non-local labourers in the district and mounting multiple attacks on the security establishment.
Khan, a resident of Seer, Awntipora had joined the organisation on April 16, 2016. Khan was the commander for Tral sub-district and, according to the police, involved in various attacks. He managed to survive for nearly three years.
Who is Mir?
Mir, the Over Ground Worker, is a resident of Diaroo, Keller village of Shopian district. A police official told Asiaville that Mir was pursuing a bachelor’s degree in law from a college outside Jammu and Kashmir. He, however, discontinued his degree halfway through and returned home.
The official said that his father Mohammad Shafi Mir was also a militant and was killed along with many other militants when they were crossing over to this side of the Line of Control after having received arms training in Pak Occupied Kashmir ( PoK) during the troubled 1990s.