Peshawar: Pakistani security forces have shot dead four militants and taken into custody 800 people in northwestern Mardan district during a search operation to nab the killers of noted religious scholar Farooq Khan.
The militants were killed in a clash in Katlang area of the district, where the troops were conducting their search operation, security officials said today. Army commandos have occupied hilltops in Buner, Rustam and Shamozai villages in Katlang.
Backed by army soldiers and paramilitary Frontier Corps personnel, local police are conducting the cordon and search operation in Katlang and Guli Bagh areas. Some 800 people, including suspected militants, have been taken into custody during the operation.
Security officials said the operation was launched after they received intelligence reports that militants involved in the recent assassination of Farooq Khan, who was also the Vice
Chancellor of Swat Islamic University, were hiding in the area.
The Abdullah Azam Brigade, a militant faction affiliated with the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan, has claimed responsibility for killing Khan.