A civilian was also killed in the clashes that erupted near the gunfight site in Chowgam village of Kulgam district.
Officials said that on credible inputs about the presence of militants, a joint operation was launched by police and forces in the intervening night in Chowgam area of Qazigund Kulgam.
They said that during the search operation, militants fired on the search party. “Initially, the civilians were moved away from the site of encounter to safer locations,” officials said, adding that the forces then engaged the militants in an encounter.
In the ensuing of encounter, a group of five militants affiliated with HM and LeT were killed.
Police spokesman identified the slain militants as Gulzar Ahmad Padder alias Saif resident of Adijan Kulgam, Faisal Ahmad Rather alias Dawood resident of Yamrach Kulgam, Zahid Ahmad Mir alias Hashim resident of Okey Kulgam, Masroor Molvi alias Abu Darda resident of Fatehpora Anantnag and Zahoor Ahmad Lone alias Rehman Bhai resident of Nagnad Noorabad Damhal Hanjipora.
Police said that Gulzar Paddar, was a close associate of Altaf Kachroo and “was involved in a series of militant attacks including killing of five police personnel at Pambay last year along with two bank employees.”
“He was also involved in the killings of SPO at Krewan Chidder in Kulgam,” police said, adding that besides “he was involved in looting police guards at Damhaal and weapon snatching cases reported across Kulgam and many other bank robbery cases attempted in the area.”
Police said that Zahid of Okey village was wanted for his involvement in the killing of policeman Fayaz Ahmad of Zainapora on the day of Eid while as Faisal was involved in the killing of Policeman Gowhar Ahmad who was posted in Shopian last year.
“Zahoor @ Rehman and Mansoor were involved in series of terror offences besides recruitment bid in the locality,” police spokesman said, adding that arms and ammunition were also seized from the site of encounter.
Police has registered a case and initiated investigation in the instant matter, spokesman said.
Meanwhile, a civilian identified as Rouf Ahmad of Anchidora Anantnag was killed during the clashes that erupted near the encounter site in Kulgam district.
The slain civilian had received bullet injuries during the encounter and was rushed to Srinagar hospital for specialized treatment, sources said.
However, they added that the injured youth succumbed to his injuries on way to the Srinagar hospital.
Confirming the killing of a civilian, Additional Director General of Police (ADGP) Munir Ahmad Khan told KNS news agency said that all the other injured persons are stable.
He added that the joint operation that led to the killing of five militants was over.
Khan further added that they exercised maximum restraint, saying that the operation was a big success as five militants affiliated with both Hizb and LeT were killed in the gunfight.