Terrorists shot dead three policemen after abducting them from Shopian district of Jammu and Kashmir early Friday, police said.
The bodies were recovered from an orchard in Wangam area, more than a kilometre from the village the policemen were abducted from.
Police identified the dead as constable Nissar Ahmed and two special police officers - Firdous Ahmed and Kulwant Singh - from Kapren and Heepora areas of Shopian district.
Police said the residents of Batagund village had chased the terrorists and urged them not to abduct the policemen, but the militants fired a few shots in the air and and threatened the villagers.
They said the terrorists crossed a river in the area and shot dead the policemen.
Nissar Ahmed was working with the armed police, Firdous Ahmed, who was under process of being converted to constable, served in the Railways. Kulwant Singh was posted with Kulgam police.
The terrorists had also kidnapped the brother of a police constable but he was released later.
A Twitter handle purportedly belonging to the Hizbul Mujahideen group has claimed responsibility for the abduction and killing.
The policemen were abducted nearly three weeks after terrorists had abducted relatives of policemen from various places in south Kashmir on August 30. The relatives were later released.
At least eight people whose relatives worked in Jammu and Kashmir Police were abducted.
Hizbul Mujahideen commander Riyaz Naikoo had purportedly claimed responsibility for the abductions in a 12-minute video, issuing a three-day deadline for the release of all relatives of terrorists who were in police custody.
The August 30 abductions happened after the NIA arrested the second son of globally-wanted terrorist Syed Salahuddin, leader of the Hizbul Mujahideen group. Salahuddin's son was arrested on charges of receiving secret funds.
Meanwhile, the government today alleged "false propaganda" as resignation videos of half-a-dozen policemen surfaced following the kidnapping and killing of three cops in Jammu and Kashmir, just days after Hizbul Mujahideen terrorists had put out a "resign or die" threat.
The three policemen, all Special Police Officers (SPO), were dragged out of their homes in Shopian in south Kashmir before daybreak and killed by terrorists. Their bodies with multiple bullet wounds were found later in an orchard near their village.
Then emerged resignation videos and reports that terrorists were raiding homes and forcing policemen to resign.
"My name is Nawaz Ahmad Lone, resident of Kulgam. I was working as an SPO, I am resigning of my own free will, not because of any compulsion," said one Special Police Officer in a video.
Another said on camera he had been an SPO for six years but had resigned on the 17th and had "nothing to do with the police department".
"My name is Shabir Ahmad Thokar son of Ghulam Mohammad Thokar . I was working as an SPO for last 8 years through this video l want tell everybody that from today I have no relation with police department," said a third cop in his video.
The home ministry rubbished the videos, with some officials claiming these were from people who were not SPOs anymore. "Reports have appeared in a section of media that some Special Police Officers (SPOs) in #JammuAndKashmir have resigned. J&K Police have confirmed that these reports are untrue and motivated. These reports are based on false propaganda by mischievous elements," said the ministry in a statement.
The terror threats have been circulating around villages in the region.
On Tuesday, the Hizbul Mujahideen had put out a video threatening to kill security personnel, mainly SPOs, if they didn't resign. The video featured a collage of images of Jammu and Kashmir police, and a voice asked cops to submit their resignations within four days.
"Upload your resignations on the internet or face the consequences," the local head of Umar Majeed group, an offshoot of Hizbul Mujahideen, is heard saying. Security officials said posters carrying threats also come up in many villages.
The threats were directed mainly at SPOs who are an important source of intelligence against terrorists for security agencies. Such policemen are mostly locals who work with security agencies.