Indian security forces killed two suspected militants in Nipora area of Kulgam district of Jammu and Kashmir early on Saturday, the Kashmir Zone Police tweeted. The militants have not yet been identified.

Security forces launched a cordon and search operation in Nipora area of the district following inputs about the presence of militants there, a police officer said according to PTI. He claimed that the militants fired at security forces, following which there was an encounter, leading to the death of two of them. The police officer added that the identities and affiliations of the suspected militants are being ascertained. The search operation is still going on, he said.

Later, a press release by the police said that security forces gave the militants an opportunity to surrender by making announcements on loudspeakers, but they hurled a grenade and fired indiscriminately at the forces. The militants were killed in the ensuing gunfight.

Arms and ammunition were recovered from the site of the encounter, the press release said. The police have registered a case in the matter and investigation is being carried out. The police also said there had been no “collateral damage” during the operation.

“Citizens are once again requested not to venture inside the encounter zone since such an area can prove dangerous due to stray explosive materials,” the press release said. “People are requested to co-operate with police till the area is completely sanitised and cleared.”

Bomb scare on Bandipora-Srinagar Road

Meanwhile, Bandipora Senior Superintendent of Police Rahul Malik said that a bomb disposal squad was sent to the Popchan-Nadihal area on Bandipora-Srinagar Road, after the Army’s road opening party found a suspicious object there, ANI reported.

There has been a spurt in encounters between security forces and suspected militants over the past month. Five suspected militants were killed in a gunfight with security forces in Shopian district of Jammu and Kashmir on June 10. As many as 14 suspected militants have been killed in three operations in Shopian within a week.

On June 8, Jammu and Kashmir Director General of Police Dilbag Singh had said that the security forces have eliminated 22 militants, including six top commanders, in nine operations in the last two weeks. He added that there could be around 150 to 250 militants in the Kashmir region and 125 to 150 in Jammu region.