From Ayatullah Khumani to Zakir Musa- All Major Commanders of New Age Militancy Killed

Militancy saw a rise in local recruits after the summer uprising of 2010 failed, the youth who picked up guns during that period included Burhan Wani, Majid Zarger, Dawood Sheikh, Ayatullah Khumani.

Reports estimate that as many as 500 local youth have become militants out of whom the majority have come from South Kashmir.

A report by Indian agencies has spotlighted the spread of the militancy that was quelled in 2010, but surged after the killing of Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani on July 8, 2016.

ALSO READ: Long Reads: The New Age Militancy

Ayatullah Khumani had joined militant ranks in 2010 and figured in the list of most wanted militants, while Dawood and Majid Zarger became the faces of militancy during those years.

Khumani (22), a resident of Czingam inSouth Kashmir’s Kulgam district was killed in an encounter with forces in May 2015.

Dawood Sheikh (21), a resident of Quimoh in Kulgam District was killed in an encounter with Government Forces on Mar 07, 2016.

Majid Zarger (23), a resident of Quimoh, was killed in an encounter in Arwani on 10 January 2017.

Burhan Wani who confined himself to Tral division of South Kashmir, continued recruiting youth and in some years, he became the face of ‘New Age Militancy.’

The Indian Army in June of 2017 prepared a list of 12 Most wanted Militants and launched an operation all out against the Militancy which has seen a fresh life post the killing of Burhan Wani in July 2016.

Out of the 12 Most Wanted Militants, Only one who has survived the storm is Riyaz Naikoo.

The Government Forces have been able to hunt down 250 Militants, which included most of the Militant commanders.

Apart from which, they have arrested 800 OGWs in 2018, which they believe is equally responsible for the intensification of crackdown against Militancy.

Junaid Matoo, a resident of Khudwani had joined militancy at the age of 18. He was put in the list of 12 most wanted militants in the Valley by the Indian Army was Killed in an encounter with Forces in Arwani area of Bijbehara in South Kashmir’s Islamabad (Anantnag) District on 16 June, 2017.

Bashir Ahmed Wani alias Lashkari was killed by Government Forces on 1 July 2017 when Government Forces laid siege around a house in Breenti area of Dialgam in South Kashmir’s Islamabad (anantnag) District.

Waseem Ahmed Shah of Heff Shermal was killed in an encounter at Litter in Pulwama District of South Kashmir on October 13 2017.

Abu Dujana known popularly as the Cordon breaker was killed in an encounter in Hakripora area of South Kashmir’s Pulwama District on 01 August 2017 along with his associate, Arif Lelhari.

Abu Hamas was killed in an encounter with Government Forces on 17 March this year at Khanmoh, he was the Jaish-e-Mohammed divisional commander but joined hands with Zakir Musa soon after Zakir split from Militant outfit Hizb ul Mujahideen.

Saddam Padder had also appeared in the list of most wanted Militants prepared by Indian Army in 2017 June. Padder joined militant ranks in the late 2013 and from being a shadow of the slain Burhan Wani, climbed the ladder within the ranks to become one of the most wanted militants in the Kashmir valley.

Showkat Ahmed Tak besides a low-profile militant was a local contact of Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba militants. Even though Showkat didn’t become a household name like Burhan Wani, he had become one of the “deadliest militants” for Government forces in the Valley.

Mohammed Yasin Itoo an A++ Category Hizb Militant was killed in an encounter at Awneera area in South Kashmir’s Shopian District on 14 August 2017.

Altaf Ahmed Kaczroo, A resident of Hawoora area of Quimoh belt of Kulgam district in south Kashmir was killed in an encounter in Islamabad (Anantnag) District on August 29 this year.

Zeenat ul Islam, a resident of Sugan area in Shopian was killed in an encounter on 12 January.

The eliminations of senior commanders have now put most of the surviving militants in south Kashmir, where the number of militants has been the highest in a decade, on the back foot and without enough experience in its ranks.

Over 600 militants were killed in counter-insurgency operations in the last three years. The prominent militants who are still active include Hizb field commander Naikoo, Abbas Sheikh and Ansar chief Zakir Musa.

At least five militant commanders killed in recent months — Zeenat-ul-Islam of Shopian, Mohammad Sualeh of Tral, Shakir Dar of Tral, Umar Majeed of Kulgam, Adnan Lone of Awantipora —had joined the insurgency in 2015. (The Kashmiriyat)