According to the Newspaper, They were part of an anti-terrorist operation being undertaken by the Army's 13 Rashtriya Rifles and the Jammu and Kashmir Police's Special Operations Group in Bandipora district.
The two Garuds killed on Wednesday in Kashmir were from the first batch of the Indian Air Force (IAF) commandos embedded with the Army for live situational training in Kashmir, a decision taken in the wake of the terrorist attack on the Pathankot airbase in 2016.
Summary: This is the second known instance of the Garud force suffering fatalities in anti-terror operations. The move to send IAF commandos on attachment for anti-terror experience is a fallout of the Pathankot airbase terror attack previous year. They had undergone a four week pre-induction training before being deployed for Counter Insurgency operations with 13 Rashtriya Rifles. Six heavily armed terrorists from Pakistan attacked the Air Force station on the early hours of January 02, 2016 and seven security personnel lost their lives in the ensuing operation.
"Garuds were with the Army for live situational training". Security forces launched a cordon and search operation in Hajin area of Bandipora district following information on the presence of militants in the area, an Army official said.
Official sources said the training of the elite Garud personnel with the Army was part of a range of measures the Indian Air Force (IAF) had initiated to bolster security at all its installations after the terror attack on the Pathankot Air Force base a year ago.
Sources privy to the development claim that the report also faulted Garud Commandoes for their failure in handling the situation and said that they were ill prepared for the task. Srinagar based defense spokesperson also confirmed the killing of two militants and two Air Force Garud commandos during the gun battle. Two IAF Garud personnel, who were part of the operation for the objective of training and experience, were injured in the exchange of fire with the militants, the official said. The Army and Navy, of course, have had their Para-Special Forces and Marcos (marine commandos) for long.