J&K encounter: Jawan killed, four civilians die in clashes

Map excludes Jammu and Kashmir from India at Health Ministry event

Map excludes Jammu and Kashmir from India at Health Ministry event

"The operation has been called off after no militant bodies were retrieved from the debris of the blasted house", a police official said.

Kulgam: At least 4 civilians were killed and around 82 people were wounded with some of them critically during clashes which erupted near the gunfight site in Khudwani area of Kulgam district.

"However, the militants had changed the positions during the night and they managed to flee from the area taking advantage of clashes between stone-pelting youth and security forces".

Officials here said that fighting broke out at around 11 am on Wednesday after the security forces laid siege to Wani Mohalla of Khudwani area in Kulgam, about 72-km south of Srinagar. After initial exchange of fire, the operation was halted till dawn while all arrangements were put in place to prevent militants from escaping.

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The violence began overnight when Indian soldiers cordoned off the southern village of Khudwani on a tip that rebels were hiding there, police said. Three Army jawans and four civilians were also killed in the incident.

"The slain Armyman was identified as Sepoy S Gunakar Roy".

Another injured person, identified as 30-year-old Aijaz Palla, later succumbed in a hospital, a health official said.

The news of civilian killings triggered protests in Srinagar and other places.

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Students in several colleges and universities carried out protests shouting pro-freedom slogans. It is not immediately known how the deceased got injured.

The killing of four civilians and injuring at least 70 people in Kulgam has evoked widespread protests in the length and breadth of Kashmir with Joint Resistance Leadership (JRL) calling for complete shutdown on Thursday.

One jawan and three civilians have lost their lives in the encounter till now.

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