A senior police officer told IANS: "We have arrested Talib Hussain Lali, the longest surviving HM commander from Bandipora district in north Kashmir today. He was operating in the Valley for the last 15 years. The arrest occurred at Bazipora (Ajas) village of Bandipora district."

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The officer added: "Two other suspects, Abdul Rashid Lali and Shakeel Ahmad Mir, have also been arrested."

The operation to arrest Talib Hussain was carried out jointly by the state police and the counter-insurgency Rashtriya Rifles, according to police sources.

Security officials said the arrested guerrilla commander was in 'category A', meaning that he carried a reward of nearly Rs 5 lakh on his head.