Poonch encounter ends: Remaining two militants killed, search on

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In a major breakthrough, security personnel on Tuesday managed to kill two militants hiding inside the mini secretariat building after the Indian Army’s Engineers Regiment made a 5 ft wide hole along the building wall on the ground, using IEDs. Security forces used this hole as an entry point into the building as the usual entry route could have been booby-trapped.
The explosion caused by an IED made with 60 kg of explosive, which also shook official and residential buildings. Residents in the neighbourhood climbed onto their rooftops to witness the final leg of the operation.
In the meantime, a party of army commandos, using a ladder, have entered the building through a window on the third floor. The operation ended after security personnel flushed out the militants from the building which has 87 rooms, 25 bathrooms and 8 underground septic and water tanks.
The exchange of gunfire between both sides entered its third day on Tuesday, with six militants being killed by security personnel since Sunday. Of the six, two were killed in Joginder Palace, a private building adjacent to Army’s Brigade headquarters in Poonch, where an elderly couple was rescued by troops after 11 hours of captivity. This is the longest militant attack since terrorists attacked the Pathankot Air Base where exchange of gunfire between Pakistani terrorists and security forces continued for nearly a week. As the operation ended, thousands of Hindus and Muslims entered the under construction building raising pro-Army, pro-India and anti-Pakistan slogans. The local police had tough time in dispersing the crowd as many were in celebratory mood over the Army’s surgical operation.

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