Srinagar: The close aide of Maulana Masood Azhar, chief of terror organisation Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM), has been gunned down on Thursday in Awantipora encounter.
The top Masood aide is among the four Jaish terrorists, who were killed in a fierce gun-battle in the Awantipora forest area on Tuesday- where they were hiding. But the gun-battle claimed lives of an Armyman and a SOG (Special Operations Group) personnel.
The slain JeM operative has been identified as Mufti Yasir, who was an operational commander in south Kashmir. Yasir was believed to have been planning a fidayeen attack in Srinagar, for which his men were training in the forests of Tral.
According to the Jammu and Kashmir Police, they had been working for the past few days on intel of some new operatives working in Tral to carry out a suicide attack at a security forces’ establishment.
Reportedly, Yasir had been operating in the Tral region for the past one year. He was also a close associate of another Jaish terrorist Mufti Waqas, who masterminded the Sunjuwan Army camp attack. Waqas was killed in an encounter in Samboora Hatiwara on March 6.
After Waqas’ encounter, JeM appointed another Pakistan-origin terrorist Umar Khalid, as the outfit’s commander in south Kashmir. While Mufti Yasir alias Qari Yasir was designated as the operation commander in the region.