Two persons killed in security forces’ firing in Kashmir

Bodies of dreaded Lashkar-e-Taiba militant Junaid Ahmad Mattoo and two others were recovered on Saturday from the encounter site in Arwani village of South Kashmir.”Some of the militants also fired from within the crowd indiscriminately on the security forces engaged in the gunfight”, the police spokesman said, “In the cross firing some people were injured and of them two civilians succumbed to their wounds in hospital”. The militants also disfigured their bodies.The senior police official told the nes agency that LeT could have attacked the police party to avenge the death of its local commander Junaid Mattoo, who was killed by the security forces in an encounter in Arwani village in Anantnag earlier on Friday.Villagers said soldiers blasted at least two houses with explosives.Hurriyat leaders Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umer Farooq and Yasin Malik have called for complete shutdown on July 17, against the killings of civilians stating that the government of India has unleashed war on the people of J&K. The police were not travelling in a bullet-proof vehicle.Police said Junaid was district commander of LeT and involved in number of militant attacks. “He was also involved in attack on police party in Anantnag town past year in which two policemen were killed”, the police spokesman said.During Friday’s encounter, two civilians were also killed.Matoo, who carried a bounty of Rs. ten lakh on his head, made headlines by attacking a police van and killing three policemen past year and was involved in several attacks on security forces.In recent years, Kashmiris, mainly youths, have displayed open solidarity with anti-India rebels and sought to protect them by engaging troops in street clashes during military operations against the militants. The government forces have launched massive cordon and search operation in Achabal area.They said several persons were injured in the clashes.While trains running between Baramulla and Bannihal towns were halted, the Kashmir University postponed its examinations scheduled for Saturday.But Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti says neither guns nor the Army can bring peace to the troubled valley and that dialogue with the separatists is the only way forward.