Srinagar: Two terrorists have been neutralised while three Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) men and two Jammu and Kashmir Police personnel lost their lives in a gunfight that has been going on since Friday in Handwara of Jammu and Kashmir's Kupwara district.

A civilian caught in the gunfight has also been reported to have died. 

The Indian security forces continue to flush terrorists out of Kupwara on the third day of the gunfight as cordon and search operations are still on.

According to the officials, the CRPF jawans and policemen were killed after a terrorist, who was presumed to be dead, suddenly rose from the debris of a house and fired indiscriminately at the security forces.

Reports suggest that two houses and two cowsheds were destroyed by the security forces as the hiding terrorists kept on changing positions at the site of the gunfight.

Kashmir IGP SP Pani, speaking to the media, cited operational difficulties over the long-drawn-out encounter. “During the operation, bullets are fired from both sides. The place where the operation is going on has a civilian population as well; so we have to evacuate them. We have done the evacuation. The area is congested. Keeping in view the operational difficulties, the right action is being taken,” Pani said.

Jammu and Kashmir has been tense since February 14 when a deadly terror attack in Pulwama led to the death of nearly 50 CRPF jawans. It was the biggest terrorist attack on the Indian security forces in Jammu and Kashmir. 

Over the past five days, there has been 51 violations of the ceasefire agreement by the Pakistani forces along the line of control (LoC) in Rajouri and Poonch districts. It has left four civilians, including three members of a family, dead and 14 others, including eight security personnel, injured.