Srinagar: The spate of successful encounter and elimination of terrorists in Jammu and Kashmir owes to the superlative intelligence network the security forces have developed in the state.

On Saturday, two more terrorists were gunned down in Pulwama but this operation was totally different from other campaigns by the security forces this year. MyNation spoke to senior Army and police officers about this ‘technically advanced’ operation.

Both the terrorists killed in the encounter — Liaqat and Wajid — were not recent militant recruits. They had been active for more than two years.


Being local terrorists, Liaqat and Wajid rarely used mobile phones for communication. They were mostly dependent on over ground workers (OGWs) for orders from across the LoC. Working in the ‘buddy pair’ style, the duo shared one mobile number. The security agencies got a whiff of this operating procedure of the terrorists after their boss Sameer Tiger was gunned down on April 30.

The cyber cell of Jammu and Kashmir Police tracked the mobile number but, after the terrorists fled from the cordon in Pulwama in July, agencies could successfully trace their movement. Sources told MyNation that their mobile phone was switched on in the evening of Friday when they contacted another OGW in southern Kashmir. Based on that input, the local Army unit was informed, which conducted an operation along with other security forces.

This operation was carried out completely on the basis on technical surveillance. The two terrorists were also associates of top Lashkar-e-Taiba commander Bashir Lashkari, who was killed in July last year.

Gang wars

Sources told MyNation that terror groups operating in the Valley were on the verge of a split after the killing of Bashir Lashkari and rise of ISJK in Kashmir.

Many terror commanders could be gunned down by the security forces that took advantage of the internal war among terror groups. “An OGW affiliated to a terror group passed information on to us, which led to the killing of five Jaish-e-Mohammed terrorists in twin encounters,” an Army officer told MyNation. 

This internal war among terrorists has helped security forces in advancing Operation All Out.

Soft corner for local terrorists

Despite the rise in encounters against local terrorists, security forces in the Valley have always maintained that local terrorists are ‘boys’ of Kashmir who have been radicalised by elements across the Line of Control. An Army officer who heads anti-terror operations in southern Kashmir said that the Army would always try to bring local terrorists back to the mainstream. For that, he said, “We always make announcements before we go into the advance stage in any encounter.”

Final assault

With the Army introducing Israeli technique of using modified M2 Flamethrowers during encounters, there is minimal collateral damage on the Indian side. Terrorists hiding inside residential complexes are forced to leave the premises when a wave of modified M2 Flamethrower hits their hideout. Then they are gunned down by the security forces in the open. The Army repeated the modus operandi in the Pulwama encounter when two top local terrorists were gunned down after repeated warnings to surrender.