Two Indian Army officers and a police official were killed in a gunfight with suspected militants in Jammu and Kashmir in south Kashmir’s Anantnag district on Wednesday.

The Army officials have been identified as Colonel Manpreet Singh and Major Aashish Dhonchak of the 19 Rashtriya Rifles. The police officer was identified as Deputy Superintendent of Police Humayun Muzamil Bhat.

The Rashtriya Rifles is the counter-insurgency force of the Army that operates in Jammu and Kashmir.

On Wednesday, the Chinar Corps said that a joint operation was launched by the security forces on a tip-off. However, the security forces came under fire from the militants during the search operation, it said.

All the casualties took place in the initial bursts of firing,” an officer told The Indian Express. “The firing was so intense that the joint team got little time to react. The terrorists fired incessantly, hampering the quick evacuation of the injured officers.”

There were no reports of any militant deaths till late evening and gunfight was still underway.

Following the deaths of the three security personnel, Army and police officers, including Director General of Police Dilbagh Singh, rushed to South Kashmir to monitor the situation.

Manpreet Singh, an officer of the Sikh Light Infantry, was commanding the 19 Rashtriya Rifles unit based in Kokernag. He hailed from Punjab’s Mohali district and is survived by his mother, wife and two children, according to The Indian Express.

Dhonchak hailed from the Binjhol village in Haryana’s Panipat district. He is survived by his wife Jyoti, a four-year-old daughter and his parents, the Hindustan Times reported.

Bhat was the son of retired Jammu and Kashmir Inspector General of Police Ghulam Hasan Bhat. He hailed from the town of Tral in South Kashmir and is survived by his wife and one-month-old son.