One injured in grenade blast, encounter on in north Kashmir

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Srinagar Jan 20 (UNI) One person was injured in a grenade blast at Sopore while a fierce encounter was on between militants and security forces at Handwara in north Kashmir, official sources said here today.

The sources said the militants hurled a hand grenade towards a security force patrol party at main market Sopore, about 55 km from here in Baramulla district. However, it missed the intended target and exploded on the roadside injuring a pedestrian identified as Abdul Rashid Marazi. The injured was hospitalised, the sources said, adding that the police later conducted search operation in the area but the militants had managed to escape.

The militants attacked a joint search party of the police and 30 Rashtriya Rifles (RR) at village Mandigam, Handwara, in the frontier district of Kupwara, they said.

According to the sources, the militants later entered the house of one Mushtaq Ahmad Mir and the security forces further tightened cordon around the house after reinforcement was rushed from nearby camps there.

''The holed up militants are repeatedly being asked to surrender,'' they said.

UNI BAS FMH MS BD1647

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