PESHAWAR - There are conflicting reports pouring in as Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Inspector General of Police Akbar Khan Hoti claimed on Monday that the chief of banned Lashkar-i-Islam (LI), Mangal Bagh, is dead, while a spokesman for LI rejected the claim, saying the militant commander is alive.

Talking to media persons at Arbab Niaz Stadium, Akbar Hoti said they had received information about the death of Mangal Bagh, who was killed during fighting between two rival militant groups in remote Tirah Valley of Khyber Agency.

He did not confirm when the LI chief was killed; however, he said they were trying to confirm the information. According to reports, Mangal Bagh was injured during clashes with the rival militants group in Tirah valley. The rival groups are fighting for the control of the area.

Meanwhile, a commander of LI Mohammad Hussain while talking to media persons from undisclosed location rejected the media reports and said the LI chief was safe and sound, adding that he had neither been injured nor killed.

It is worth to mention that there were reports about injuring of Mengal Bagh in a suicide attack in the Tirah Valley.

Monitoring Desk adds: Mangal Bagh was operating in Kurram and Orakzai agencies and responsible for violence and killings in the region. At least 51 militants and four soldiers had been killed in airstrikes and clashes with security forces in Kurram and Orakzai over the past week, officials said according to a private TV channel.