The Islamic extremist group Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM), led by Maulana Masood Azhar, suffered a major blow on Saturday when security forces killed its Pakistani chief commander for Kashmir, Yasir Tunda, in a fierce encounter at Chatlor village in Rafiabad area of Baramulla district.
Yasir alias Showket, Shazeb and Shoib, was one of the senior-most militant leaders in Kashmir who had infiltrated the valley in 2002, three years after his chief Maulana Masood Azhar was released from jail in exchange for passengers of the hijacked Indian Airlines plane IC-814.
Acting on specific intelligence inputs about the presence of high-value target, the police, assisted by 22 Rashtriya Rifles of the army, cordoned off the suspected house late on Friday night. “In the wee hours of Saturday, when the search party led by Sub-Inspector Dilraj Singh stormed into the house, the militant commander hiding inside opened indiscriminate fire due to which the officer was injured. In the exchange of fire, the Pakistani terrorist Commander of JeM outfit was killed”, said a police spokesman.
Police said the slain militant was involved in a number of civilian killings. “He was one of the top militant commanders of foreign-origin active in north Kashmir. Earlier, he was active in Lolaab after which he changed his base to Sopore, where he operated for three years. He was also the man who arranged finances for terror activities in Kashmir,” said a police officer.