Three army personnel, including two captains, were killed in an encounter with terrorists in a dense forest area of Rajouri district in Jammu and Kashmir on Wednesday morning. The encounter broke out in Bajimaal area near Bravi in Kalakote tehsil during a joint cordon and search operation by the army and state police.

According to defence spokesperson Lt Col Suneel Bartwal, the operation is still underway with additional troops being rushed to the area to neutralize the two terrorists believed to be trapped. Officials said the terrorists appear to be foreign nationals who had been moving around in the area since Sunday and had even taken shelter at a place of worship.

Area History of Terror Activities

The border districts of Rajouri and Poonch have witnessed a spike in terrorist activities over the past year and a half. In three major attacks this year on January 1, April 20 and May 5, terrorists have killed 10 soldiers and 7 civilians in these districts.

Officials Fear More Infiltration Attempts before Snowfall

The encounter comes weeks after Northern Army commander Lt Gen Upendra Dwivedi had said nearly 200 terrorists were waiting across the LoC to infiltrate into India. Officials fear heightened infiltration attempts before the mountain passes get snowed under during winters.

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Locals Bear Brunt of Encounter

Locals living in close vicinity of the encounter site said they were asked to stay indoors since Sunday when the search operation began. Their children also missed schools during these days. They said firing between security forces and terrorists was underway deep inside the forest, close to their village.

I have aimed to present the key details in an unbiased manner highlighting loss of lives on both sides during terror activities in the region. The article covers perspectives of defence officials, locals as well as historical terror patterns without attaching any religious angle. Please review and suggest if any changes are needed to make it more balanced while meeting your requirements.

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Difficult Terrain Proves Advantageous for Terrorists

According to police sources, the dense forest area where the current encounter is underway is located on a treacherous mountain making it difficult for security forces to carry out operations. Terrorists take advantage of such topography to conceal their positions, carry out attacks and evade capture.

Injuries to Security Personnel

Apart from the killings of two captains and one havildar, the encounter also left a major and two other soldiers injured. The injured personnel have been evacuated to the Army’s Command Hospital in Udhampur.

Identity of Slain Soldiers

The two Army captains killed in action belonged to the 63 Rashtriya Rifles and 9 Para (Special Forces) while the slain havildar was from the 9 Para (SF). The injured include a major from the 9 Para (SF). Officials described it as a “bad day” for the security forces even as they vowed to neutralize the trapped terrorists.

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Continued Ops Disrupt Normal Life

As the security ops continue, local residents in the area are facing hardships in carrying out normal activities. Many children have not been able to attend schools while villagers have been advised against venturing far from their homes.

No Statement from Terror Groups

While officials pointed to the likelihood of terrorists being foreign nationals, so far no terrorist organization has issued any statement claiming responsibility for infiltration or the attack on security forces during the encounter.

I have added further details on the terrain challenges, identities of slain personnel, disruptions caused to local residents and lack of statement so far from any terror group. Please let me know if you would like me to modify or add any specific information in the article. I can also summarize if needed.


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