Five militants were killed in an encounter with security forces in Badigam area of Jammu and Kashmir’s Shopian district on Sunday, police said.
"Encounter concluded at Badigam Zainpora Shopian, 5 bodies of terrorists recovered. Well done boys - Army/ CRPF/J&K Police," Shesh Paul Vaid, DGP, Jammu & Kashmir said.
Top Hizbul commander Saddam Padder and a missing Jammu and Kashmir University professor Muhammad Rafi Bhat were among the five militants killed in the gun battle. The other three militants were indentified as Tawseef Sheikh, Bilal Moulvi and Adil Ahmad.
All the the millitants killed in the gun battle were said to close aide of slained Hizbul commander Burhan Wani.
Following a tip off about the presence of militants in Badigam village by local sources, security forces launched a cordon and search operation on Sunday morning, a police official said.
As the forces were closing in during the search operation, the militants opened fire, leaving at least two jawans injured.
“The search operation turned into an encounter after the hiding militants fired upon the forces, which was retaliated,” the official said.
"We appealed to them (terrorists) to surrender but continuous firing from inside is underway, cannot confirm the number of terrorists yet," said Shailendra Mishra, SSP, Shopian.
Clashes erupts after Shopian encounter, five civilian died
Soon after the Shopian encounter in which five militants were gunned down, massive clashes erupted in the area. Hundreds of locals gathered at the spot and started pelting stones at the security forces.
At least five civilians caught in the clashes and lost their life. A 17-year-old teenager identified as Asif Ahmad Mir was one among the five civillians dead. He was reportedly shot at head during the clashes. The police, however, claimed that Mir was injured in cross-firing during the encounter.
Following the encounter and the clashes, internet services were suspended in the area.