Four terrorists have been killed in an encounter which is still underway in India’s Jammu and Kashmir on Monday. The encounter is happening at Jammu and Kashmir’s Shopian district. The local police said the slain terrorists belonged to proscribed terrorist outfit Lashkar-e-Taiba.
The encounter started at 2 a.m. at Manihal at Shopian district.
“One more unidentified terrorist killed in Shopian encounter, total four terrorists affiliated with proscribed terror outfit LeT killed, incriminating materials including arms and ammunition recovered. Search going on,” police said.
Indian Army said the joint operation is in progress and the weapons recovered include one AK rifle and three pistols.
The gunfight started after security forces cordoned off the area where the militants were said to be hiding and launched a search operation on the basis of a specific information.
As the security forces zeroed in on the terror hideout they came under a heavy volume of fire that triggered the encounter.
Formed in 1990 in the Kunar province of Afghanistan, the Lashkar-e-Taiba, also known as Jama’at-ud-Da’awa is based in Muridke near Lahore in Pakistan and is headed by Hafiz Muhammad Saeed.
Its first presence in Jammu and Kashmir was recorded in 1993 when 12 Pakistani and Afghan mercenaries infiltrated across the Line of Control (LoC) in tandem with the Islami Inquilabi Mahaz, a terrorist outfit then active in the Poonch district of state.
The LeT is outlawed in India under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act. It was included in the Terrorist Exclusion List by the US Government on December 5, 2001.
The US administration designated the Lashkar-e-Taiba as a Foreign Terrorist Organization on December 26, 2001. It is also a banned organization in Britain since March 30, 2001.
The group was proscribed by the United Nations in May 2005.
The LeT’s professed ideology goes beyond merely challenging India’s sovereignty over the State of Jammu and Kashmir.
The Lashkar’s ‘agenda’, as outlined in a pamphlet titled Why are we waging jihad includes the restoration of Islamic rule over all parts of India.
Further, the outfit seeks to bring about a union of all Muslim majority regions in countries that surround Pakistan.
Towards that end, it is active in J&K, Chechnya and other parts of Central Asia.
Hafiz Saeed has said that the purpose of Jihad is to carry out a sustained struggle for the dominance of Islam in the entire world and to eliminate the evil forces and the ignorant. He considers India, Israel and US to be his prime enemies
and has threatened to launch Fidayeen (suicide squad) attacks on American interests too.
The Lashkar-e-Taiba does not believe in democracy and nationalism. Jihad, Hafiz Saeed said during the All Pakistan Ulema Convention held on July 17, 2003, at Lahore, is the only way Pakistan can move towards dignity and prosperity.