Kashmir Indepth

Junaid Sehrai among two militants killed in Srinagar gunfight

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Babbu Khan

Srinagar, May 19 (KINS) : An MBA passout student turned militant Junaid Ashraf Sehrai, son of Tehreek-e-Hurriyat Chairman Mohammad Ashraf Sehrai was killed along with his associate in a gunfight at Nawakadal area of Srinagar on Tuesday.

Junaid Sehrai went missing in March 2018 and later his picture, brandishing an AK-47, went viral on social media.

The joining of Junaid, who completed his MBA degree from the Kashmir University, was the first such case where a son of a separatist leader of Jammu and Kashmir had joined a militant group.

An official told news agency KINS, the gunfight began around 2 am after a joint team of the CRPF and Jammu and Kashmir Police launched a cordon and search operation in the area following inputs about the presence of militants. He said hiding militants opened fire on the searching party triggering a gunfight.

There was a lull in the firing, prompting the police to initiate search operation at the encounter site, but it had to be suspended after firing resumed hours later, the official said.

He said in the exchange of fire two militants including Junaid Ashraf Khan (Sehrai) and his associate Tariq Ahmed Sheikh, a resident of Pulwama were killed, while three personnel from CRPF along with one policeman from Special Operation Group were injured in the gunfight which also saw damage to some houses in the area. 

Addressing a press conference in Srinagar post gunfight DGP Dilbagh Singh said that in the operation that started last night at Nawa Kadal area and culminated on Tuesday afternoon, Hizbul Mujahideen’s divisional commander for Central Kashmir Junaid Sehrai was killed. “Sehrai was assigned the task of heading Central Kashmir areas,” he said.

The DGP said both militants were tasked to lure youth into militancy and for grenade throwing. “Sehrai would hold meetings with the youth and lure them towards militancy,” he said. His associate Tariq was active in Pulwama and Shopian districts.(KINS)

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