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Sunjwan terror attack: Three terrorists gunned down, operation still underway

The security forces on Saturday killed three terrorists hours after they attacked an Army camp in Jammu and Kashmir's Sunjwan area.

Sunjwan terror attack: Three terrorists gunned down, operation still underway

Sunjwan: The security forces on Saturday killed three terrorists, believed to be associated with Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM), hours after they attacked an Army camp in Jammu and Kashmir's Sunjwan area.

According to Defence PRO, at least three terrorists have been killed and the operation is still underway. 

Some AK-47 assault rifles and other weapons were also recovered from the terrorists netralised by the security forces.

''Search of their belongings confirmed that the terrorists belonged to JeM. So far, one JCO and 1 NCO, both belonging to J&K, have been martyred and 9 others are injured. Two of them being critical. The operation will continue till all terrorist are apprehended or killed,'' the Defence PRO said.

The security forces are trying to eliminate other terrorists believed to be holed up in the area. Their exact number is not known yet. 

Meanwhile, Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti this afternoon chaired an emergency meeting with top state government officials, including the J&K Police DGP SP Vaid, to discuss the situation.

Sources said the Army was going from room to room to pin down the other terrorists holed up inside the residential building. Officials further said that all the families have been evacuated and there is no hostage situation.

A group of heavily armed terrorists, believed to be from the 'Afzal Guru squad' of JeM, today attacked the Army camp in Sunjwan, located on the outskirts of Jammu city, in which at least two junior commissioned officers (JCOs) were killed and six others, including a Major and a daughter of an Army personnel, injured.

Parliamentary Affairs Minister Abdul Rehman Veeri informed the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly that Subedar Madanlal Chowdhary and Subedar Mohammed Ashraf Mir were killed in the attack by a group of militants.

The Army, however, maintained that only one JCO was killed.

Briefing media persons at the main entrance of the camp, Jammu-based Army PRO Lt Col Devender Anand said, "In the early hours today after a brief exchange of fire with sentry on the periphery, some terrorists entered the family accommodation complex.

"The quick response teams have cordoned off the area and isolated the terrorists, who are holed up in a few houses (inside the camp)," the officer said.

He said in the operation to evacuate families, one JCO was killed while six persons, including women and children, suffered injuries.

"Due to the presence of women and children in the housing colony, the operations is being progressed cautiously to minimise the casualties," he said.

The Major has been airlifted to an Udhampur hospital where his condition was stated to be critical, Army officials said.

Army helicopters and drones have been pressed into service to ascertain the exact location of the terrorists, officials said.

While there was no action around the main entrance and vehicles were moving along the Jammu-Lakhanpur bypass in front of the camp, Army personnel in bullet-proof vehicles were engaged in the operation to rescue people from the family quarters in the rear side of the base.

A final assault against the holed-up terrorists has been launched as the rescue operation is almost over, media reports from the area said. 

Contingents of para-military CRPF and police personnel have been posted outside the boundary wall and were keeping curious onlookers at bay to avoid civilian casualties. Generators and searchlights were brought to the camp, apparently for a night assault.

Inspector General of Police (Jammu) S D Singh Jamwal told reporters here that "around 4:55 am suspicious movement was noticed by the sentry and his bunker was fired upon. The fire was retaliated. The number of militants is not known. They have been cornered in one of the family quarters."

Soon after the attack, reinforcements of the Army's special forces and special operations group (SOG) rushed to the spot and cordoned off the area amid a fierce gunfight, security officials said.

Schools in a five-kilometre radius around the camp have been closed by the authorities as a precautionary measure.

A high alert has been sounded in Jammu and security beefed up in and around the city.

Intelligence inputs had warned of an attack on an Army or security establishment by Jaish-e-Mohammed in view of the death anniversary of Afzal Guru who was hanged on February 9, 2013.

Those injured included an Army officer, Havaldar Abdul Hamid, Lance Naik Bahadur Singh and the daughter of slain Subedar Chowdhary, the minister earlier told the House which witnessed protests by BJP members who raised anti-Pakistan slogans.

(With PTI inputs)