19 Nov 2020: J&K: Four suspected Jaish terrorists eliminated, had "big plan"
In what qualifies as a massive win for security forces, four suspected terrorists of Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed were neutralized this morning in a gun battle on the Jammu-Srinagar National Highway near Nagrota.
A police officer also suffered injuries during the encounter.
Mukesh Singh, Inspector General of Police, Jammu, claimed that the terrorists had come to the area with a "big plan."
Here's more on this.
What happened: Terrorists were hiding in truck, were intercepted by security forces
The encounter started around 5 am after the truck, in which the suspected terrorists were hiding, was intercepted near the Ban toll plaza by security forces.
There was credible information about terrorists moving from the Samba sector toward Kashmir.
32-year-old, Kuldeep Raj, who is with the Special Operations Group, suffered injuries in the neck. He is currently said to be stable.
Fact: The terrorists threw grenades at security forces: Top cop
"In the exchange of fire four terrorists were eliminated. Terrorists lobbed grenades on security forces during checking. The truck also caught fire and a few grenades also exploded inside it during the exchanges," Singh said.
Claims: They intended to derail the upcoming local elections
Singh also revealed that the truck driver is still at large. "It's possible that they were planning a big attack. It is one of the largest seizures of its kind in the recent past. It's unprecedented," he added.
He said the terrorists could be looking to target the DDC (District Development Council) elections. A probe has been launched.
Following the incident, security was tightened.
Warning: They were asked to surrender, they chose to fire instead
DGP Dilbag Singh said the terrorists infiltrated through the Samba sector last night. "Army and CRPF too joined the operation," he told India TV.
In a clip, that surfaced on social media, Mukesh Singh was seen telling the suspected terrorists to surrender or face consequences.
He assured them that they wouldn't be harmed, but the terrorists chose to fire instead and were soon eliminated.
Fact: The clip can be viewed here
Weapons: Eleven AK-47 rifles, other weapons recovered from terrorists
Reportedly, security forces recovered 11 AK-47 rifles, three pistols, and 29 grenades from the terrorists.
CRPF spokesperson Shivnandan Singh, likened Thursday's encounter with the one which happened in January. Back then, a group of terrorists had attacked a joint party of police and CRPF at the same Ban toll plaza.
Three terrorists were killed and one cop was injured at the time.
Jaish: Jaish was responsible for the dastardly Pulwama attack
To note, Jaish is the same outfit that executed the Pulwama attack in February 2019. A suicide bomber, hailing from Kashmir, had rammed his explosives-laden vehicle on a CRPF convoy, triggering a deafening blast.
40 soldiers were martyred in the attack, dubbed as the worst to hit the Valley in years.
In retaliation, IAF had bombed Jaish's biggest camp in Balakot, Pakistan.