Security forces confirm Masood Azhar's nephew killed in Pulwama encounter: Munir Khan says M4 rifle proves JeM-Pakistan link

After Jaish-e-Mohammad chief Maulana Masood Azhar's nephew Talha Rashid was gunned down in an encounter at Pulwama on Tuesday, the security forces slammed Pakistan for abetting militancy in Jammu and Kashmir.

While addressing a press conference in Srinagar, IG, Jammu and Kashmir Police, Munir Khan along with the representatives of the Indian Army and Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) said that the recovery of a M4 rifle, besides two AK-47 rifles, from the encounter site highlighted the link between the Pakistan Army and the JeM.

M4 carbine rifle is a premier rifle used by NATO and by the militaries of country close to the US. The Pakistan Army is a major user of the weapon.

File image of Jammu and Kashmir IG Muneer Khan. PTI

File image of Jammu and Kashmir IG Munir Khan. PTI

"As far as the M4 weapon is concerned, we will investigate how it came into the hands of these militants," Khan said.

But Khan reiterated that recovery of an M4 carbine should not be a cause for worry since it is a difficult weapon to maintain and difficult to hide, adding that that only one of them have been seized so far.

"AK 47 is still the mainstream weapon. It is adaptive, flexible and the mainstay of most armies," said Indian Army Major General BS Raju.

Appreciating the joint effort in killing Talha, Khan also said that it is for the first time that Jaish has accepted that one of those killed is a Pakistani citizen.


On being asked whether they will request Pakistan to take back the body, Khan said, "Pakistan will decide whether to take the body back. We will make a request." Raju asked the Kashmir youth to stop pelting stones and co-operate with the authorities.

"They should not get involved in such illegal activities. This will only harm civilians," Raju said.

On the question of continuing militancy in the state, Khan said, "We are not saying that militancy is reducing. Hamare Kashmir ke youth ko daldal me daalna aasan hai (It is easy to draw Kashmiri youth to the quicksand of militancy). They should stop it."

The top cop also added that the security forces were trying to reduce radicalisation in the Valley.

Along with Azhar's nephew, a joint operation between the police, CRPF and the Indian Army also killed two other militants in Pulwama, which included another Pakistan national. An Indian Army jawan was also killed.

Azhar, the founder of Jaish, was one of the three militants released by the Centre in exchange of passengers of hijacked Indian Airlines plane from Kathmandu in 1999

Army chief General Bipin Rawat reacts to Pulwama encounter 

Reiterating that the recovery of M4 carbines pointed out Pakistan's involvement in terrorism, Indian Army chief Bipin Rawat said, "It doesn't matter if he is Masood Azhar's nephew or anyone else, we aim at neutralise all terrorists no matter where they belong to."

Updated Date: Nov 07, 2017 13:07 PM

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