A policeman was killed on Sunday during a gunfight between security forces and militants as protests by stone pelters helped the guerrillas to escape in Jammu and Kashmir's Bandipora district.
Police said a member of the Special Operations Group (SOG) of the state police, identified as Constable Zaheer Ahmad, was killed in Mir Mohalla area of Hajin block.
As the gunfight between the hidden militants, believed to be three in number, and the security forces raged, dozens of youths resorted to heavy stone pelting at security personnel to disrupt the operation against the rebels.
The security forces fired tear smoke shells to disperse the protesters, who kept on regrouping to continue the stone pelting.
Police sources said the hidden militants managed to escape. When firing in the area stopped, no militant body was recovered during searches at the site.
The Rashtriya Rifles, SOG and the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) had launched a cordon and search operation around 7.30 a.m. on Sunday following intelligence inputs that three Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) militants were in a house in Mir Mohalla village.