With the killing of three militants in a gun battle in Jammu and Kashmir's Tral area, Al Qaeda's offshoot, Ansar Ghazwatul Hind, has been wiped out completely, police said on Wednesday.
The police said all the killed militants were part of Ansar Ghazwatul Hind and were wanted by police and security agencies for their complicity in a series of terror crimes, including attacks on security establishments and civilian atrocities.
The three militants killed in Tral have been identified as Hameed Lone alias Hamid Lelhari, Naveed Ahmed Tak and Junaid Rashid Bhatt, all residents of Pulwama district.
Hamid Lelhari was the successor of Zakir Musa's outfit. With his killing, Ansar Ghazwatul Hind has ceased to exist, police said. However, with Over Ground Workers still there, police said there maybe chances of them joining the militant ranks and reviving the outfit.
"The AGH has been wiped out but some elements who are overground workers (OGW) are there. They suddenly crop up and join militant ranks... But, as of now, the AGH has been wiped out from Kashmir," Director General of Police, Dilbag Singh said.
Singh said Pakistan-based Jaish is trying to coordinate with other militant groups in Kashmir to carry out attacks.
According to Singh, Ansar Ghazwatul Hind was working closely with the Jaish.
"The JeM is trying to coordinate with every militant group in Kashmir. The JeM and the Lashkar-e-Taiba get their direction from Pakistan on who to target, what type of violence to incite and at which level," he said.
"So the JeM and the LeT are both trying to coordinate with every group. If you remember, two Gujjar brothers were killed in Tral and Pakistani militant Yasir of the JeM was involved in that. He was in contact with this group," Singh added.
(With Agency Inputs)