The CAPFs are armed forces under the Union Home Ministry and comprise of Assam Rifles (AR), Border Security Force (BSF), Central Industrial Security Force (CISF), Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP), National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), National Security Guard (NSG) and Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB). The encounter started early on Monday after cordon and search operation triggered exchange of fire. The attack happened at around 3.15 pm on February 14 when a "fidayeen" (suicide) attacker belonging to the Jaish-e-Muhammad (JeM) terror outfit rammed an explosives-laden SUV into the CRPF troopers' bus in Lethpora area of Pulwama district on the Jammu-Srinagar highway. A head constable of the police was also killed.
Kashmir has always been a hot point between the two countries with India accusing Pakistan of supporting militants in the region.
In the initial stage of the gunfight, an officer of Major rank and three soldiers were martyred besides a civilian, Mushtaq Ahmad Bhat, 46, was killed while three soldiers were injured. A local youth named Adil Ahmed Dar was identified as the attacker.
Massive clashes were held near the gunfight site and several of them were injured in security forces action even as the internet remained suspended.
Giving further information on the deceased, Late Major Vibhuti Shankar Dhoundiyal, 33, had joined Army in 2011 and hailed from Village Dangwal in Dehradun, Uttrakhand. A lot of them were returning to duty after spending their holidays in their respective destinations.