Srinagar, Feb 13: It was a bloody Sunday in Kashmir. Two jawans were martyred and four militants were killed following a fierce encounter on the streets of Kulgam in south Kashmir. The separatists have called for a shutdown on Monday to protest the crackdown by security forces. As the encounter took place, there were protests in which two civilians died and 21 others were injured.
The attack by four militants was a joint operation by the Hizbul Mujahideen and the Lashkar-e-Taiba. This is the first major attack in the Valley following the house arrest of Hafiz Saeed the chief of the LeT.
Politics is already at play following the encounter. The National Conference has demanded a probe into the incident involving a crackdown on civilians. However, security forces say that it was the public which had protested against the encounter. They had even resorted to violence, security officials informed.
Following the encounter, a huge crowd turned up at the funeral of the militants. The crowds were heard chanting pro-Azadi slogans and even questioned the use of indiscriminate force against civilians. Reports from Kashmir even suggest that the militants were given a gun salute by other terrorists who too had taken part in the funeral.
The problem with this encounter was that it took place on the streets. The militants decided to engage the security forces on the streets of Kulgam. The security forces urged the public to clear out of the site, but many did not pay heed. Some even tried to distract the security forces by protesting on the street where the encounter took place.