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Jaish chief Azhar’s second nephew killed in Valley was deputy chief of sniper squad

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Srinagar, Oct 31: Amidst the rising concerns of terrorists using snipers in the Kashmir Valley, the security forces gunned down a Jaish-e-Mohammad terrorist Usman Haidar, who incidentally was the nephew of Maulana Masood Azhar.

Jaish-e-Mohammad terrorist Usman Haidar

Another terrorist also from the Jaish, identified as Showkat Ahmed was also killed in the encounter that took place in the Tral area of South Kashmir.

Incidentally this is the second nephew of Jaish chief, Azhar who has been killed in an encounter in the Valley. In November 2017, the security forces had gunned down Talha Rashid at Pulwama.

Why the killing of Masood Azhar's nephew is a 'bloody blow' to the Jaish

Haidar on the other hand was the deputy chief of the sniper squad, which has been posing a menace in the Valley since the past couple of months. Sources tell OneIndia that the two terrorists killed on Tuesday were both part of the sniping squad that the Jaish recently introduced in the Valley.

The police had said that the Jaish had four persons who were part of the sniping squad. They were using the M-4 Caribes, a weapon deployed in Afghanistan by the NATO forces. The weapons were procured by the ISI from the Taliban, which had stolen the same from the US forces in Afghanistan. The M4 has been used in the Valley for sometime now.

Recently Hizbul Mujahideen terrorist, Samir Tiger had posed with the same weapon and posted images on the social media, before he was killed in an encounter. Following the encounter on Tuesday, the police recovered an M4 from the encounter site that was used by Haidar.

The killing of the two terrorists is seen as an important breakthrough in busting the sniper squad in the Valley. There have been at least three sniping incidents on the security forces and the latest was the killing of Assistant Sub Inspector of the CISF at Srinagar last Friday.

Following the encounter, the Jaish released a statement confirming the death of its terrorists. It also said that the killing of its men would be avenged. The operation on Tuesday was carried out by a joint team of the CRPF, RR and SOG. The encounter was launched after the forces received credible information about the presence of the terrorists at Chankitar in Tral.

During the encounter, the forces had to resort to firing tear gas shells to disperse the locals who were pelting stones in an attempt to stall the operation. An advisory has been issued to the locals not to stray into encounter sites as they could be hit by stray explosive materials.

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