Security Forces Tightened in Doda District Forest After Encounter with Terrorists

Security forces tightened their cordon around a forest area in the higher reaches of Doda district on Tuesday evening following an encounter with hiding terrorists, officials reported. The engagement occurred in the Sezan forest area, which borders Kishtwar district on one side and Anantnag on the other.

According to a senior police officer, two to three militants are believed to be trapped in the forest. The encounter began after intelligence revealed the presence of these terrorists in the Goli-Gadi forest area.

The joint operation, involving police and the Army, commenced with a search and cordon action after receiving a tip-off about the terrorists. The gunfight began in the Ghadi Bhagwah forest, located 35 km east of Doda town, bordering Kishtwar district. The intense exchange of fire lasted for several hours before falling silent for the night.

(Photo: The Hindu)

Preliminary reports suggest that at least two terrorists were hit during the retaliatory action, but it is too early to confirm their status, whether dead or injured. The search operation has been paused for the night and will resume on the morning of July 10 to assess the situation further.

Kathua attack

On Monday, five soldiers were killed and five others injured in an ambush by terrorists in Jammu’s Kathua district. This attack happened on Monday when militants targeted two Army trucks carrying at least a dozen troops. 

The attack on the convoy is the second in just 48 hours. Following this, another encounter took place in Doda, a district nearby, as security forces searched for the militants. The search operation involves ground troops, helicopters, drone surveillance, and para-commandos. 

The J&K police's Special Operations Group, known for handling anti-terror operations, is also involved in the search efforts. Authorities continue to comb through dense forests in the Badnota area to track down the attackers.

Rising Tensions in Jammu and Kashmir

In recent weeks, the Doda district has seen a surge in violence, marking its fourth encounter since June 12. On June 26, three foreign terrorists were killed in the Gandoh area during a day-long operation. Earlier, on June 12, five army personnel and a special police officer were injured in a fierce gunfight at the Chattargalla pass.

Just days ago, terrorists attacked a military camp in Rajouri, injuring one soldier before the attack was repelled. The following day, another policeman was injured when terrorists opened fire on a search party in Gandoh.

There are reports suggesting that over 60 foreign terrorists, trained in jungle warfare, might be operating in the Jammu region. This has spread fear across all ten districts of the province.

Over the past 32 months, 44 soldiers have been killed in the Jammu region, an area previously considered free from terrorism. In many cases, the terrorists have managed to escape without suffering casualties. 

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