New Delhi: The father and two brothers of one of the alleged masterminds of Easter bombings in Sri Lanka, were killed in a gunfight with security forces that erupted on Friday in the Eastern province.

According to police sources, Zainee Hashim, Rilwan Hashim and their father Mohamed Hashim, were among the 15 killed in a fierce gun battle with security forces on Friday.

All three were related to Zahran Hashim, the National Thawheed Jammath (NTJ) leader Zahran Hashim, who was killed inside the Shangri La hotel where he detonated himself.

At least 15 people, including six children and three women, were killed when suicide bombers blew themselves up during a shootout with security forces in Sri Lanka’s eastern province.

The security forces continue their hunt for members of the local terror group National Thowheeth Jamath (NTJ) which was behind the deadly Easter Sunday bombings in which 253 people were killed and over 500 injured.

“A total of 15 bodies recovered, six men, three women, and six children. At least four suspected suicide bombers are dead and three others who were injured are in hospital,” a police spokesperson said.

At the security council meeting held last night, it was decided that search operations to crackdown on extremist terrorism must continue until the threat is completely eliminated. Nine suicide bombers carried out a series of devastating blasts that tore through three churches and three luxury hotels on the Easter Sunday, killing 253 people.

The Islamic State claimed the attacks, but the government has blamed local Islamist extremist group NTJ for the attacks.

With inputs from agencies