11:50 GMT26 January 2020
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    New Delhi (Sputnik): On Saturday, two top Hizbul Militants and a police officer were arrested in the former state of Jammu and Kashmir, with police seizing an AK-47 rifle along with a pistol and other arms and ammunition from their possession.

    The Jammu and Kashmir Police have debunked media reports that Police Officer Davinder Singh, who was arrested over the weekend for allegedly shielding Hizbul militants, has been a recipient of any gallantry or meritorious medals from the Indian Federal Ministry of Home Affairs. He was, however, given a gallantry medal by the State police.

    A week before being caught, Singh was posted at the Srinagar International Airport and was heading the anti-hijacking team.

    Since the Deputy Superintendent of Police Singh was arrested, Indian media reports have been suggesting that the arrested cop was presented with the President’s Police Medal for Gallantry in 2019.

    “It is to clarify that DSP Davinder Singh was not awarded any gallantry or meritorious medals by the Ministry of Home Affairs as has been reported by some media outlets/persons. The only gallantry medal awarded to him during his service was by the former J&K State on Independence Day in 2018, for his role in countering an attack by terrorists at District Police Lines in Pulwama on 25 and 26 August 2017, when he was serving there as deputy superintendent,” the Jammu and Kashmir police said in a statement.

    Police have encouraged media persons to “avoid speculative stories not based on facts”.

    Jammu and Kashmir Police are known for their professionalism and don’t spare anyone, including their members if found involved in any unlawful acts or unbecoming conduct, the statement said.

    The National Investigation Agency (NIA), which probes terrorism-related cases, is investigating Singh, the arrested Jammu and Kashmir police officer.

    Sources in the NIA have revealed that Singh was protecting Hizbul militants at his residence in Srinagar.

    An officer in the agency said that Singh was accompanying the militants to Chandigarh where the two militants likely planned to stay.

    “We are suspecting that the two militants were planning a terror attack in the country before Republic Day. Singh was also taking money to protect them in terror-related cases,” he said.

    Founded in 1989, the Kashmiri militant group Hizbul Mujahideen seeks the independence of Kashmir from India. It comprises of local Kashmiri youth and has seen many commanders from near the town of Tral, considered by Indian authorities to be a hotbed of militancy.

    Related:

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    Indian Soldier Killed by Terrorist in Kashmir, Other Major Gunfight Underway
    Three, Including Top Terrorist, Killed in Encounter with Security Forces in Kashmir - Reports
    Tags:
    Republic Day of India, militants, Hizbul Mujahideen, police officer, Jammu and Kashmir, India
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