Inspector General of Police, Jammu range, Mukesh Singh on Thursday said four militants intercepted and killed at Ban Toll Plaza at Nagrota checkpoint on Jammu-Srinagar national highway were a newly infiltrated group who were planning a big strike.

Singh said the driver of the vehicle managed to escape from the spot. He said a large quantity of arms and ammunition, that included 11 AK-47 rifles and 29 grenades, was recovered from the slain militants.

“Ever since the announcement for the District Development Council [polls], police had been receiving inputs about a possible infiltration bid in Jammu,’’ the IGP said at a press conference in Jammu. “We had kept all our teams deployed at naka points. There were intelligence inputs that militants may sneak in along with large quantities of arms and ammunition.” He said at 5 am, a truck was stopped at Ban Toll Plaza, the driver disembarked from the vehicle and fled. He said when the security forces started searching, the militants hiding in the truck opened heavy fire. He said the encounter lasted for three hours and two police personnel of Special Operation Group (SOG) were injured. He said both are stable.

Singh said the identities of the militants were being ascertained.

“This is for the first time in the past few years that such a large quantity of weapons and mobile phones and other incriminating material has been recovered from slain militants,” Singh said. He said given the quality of weapons the militants were carrying, it seems they were planning something very big.

“But their plan stands foiled,” he said. “The sanitisation operation is still on and identity and the affiliation of slain militants is being ascertained.” He said the operation was jointly carried out by police, CRPF and Army.