The 37-hour Lethopora encounter came to an end on Monday. Three terrorists were killed in the encounter while five jawans were martyred. The sneak and strike encounter which took place at the CRPF training centre in south Kashmir once again raised the Afzal Guru issue.
The third terrorist who was killed was a Pakistani national. The security forces found an AK-47 rifle on him and on it was inscribed, " Afzal Guru ka Badla." ( Revenge for Afzal Guru).
This once again brought back memories of 2015 when every terrorist post an encounter left a note stating that the attack was staged in the name of Afzal Guru. All terrorists especially those from the Jaish-e-Mohammad had cited the Afzal Guru hanging as the reason for the attack.
The Lethopora encounter also witnessed the killing of two local terrorists. They have been identified as Fardeen Khanday (16) and Manzoor Baba (22). Khanday hails from Tral. He studied at a school until three months back before leaving his home to take up terrorism. He was the son of a policeman.
Baba, on the other hand, was a driver by profession before he joined the Jaish just two months back. It may be recalled that a month back his mother had made an appeal for him to return to the mainstream, but he refused to go back to his family.
Prior to the attack, Khanday had posted a video. In the disturbing video, he says, "By the time this video is released, I will be a new guest in heaven". He further goes on to state that unemployment is pushing the youth of Kashmir towards terrorism. The importance of jihad increases when infidels occupy our land, he also goes on to state. Jihad will continue until the last occupying soldier is present in Kashmir, he said in the video which is being circulated widely on the social media.