Pak-based ultras, Maoists plan to disrupt polls

Pak-based ultras, Maoists plan to disrupt polls

The upcoming Assembly elections in Jammu & Kashmir (J&K) and Jharkhand is turning out to be a challenge for security forces with both Pak-based terrorists and Maoists planning to disrupt the poll process by targeting leaders and party workers in these states.

According to intercepts by security agencies, Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) and Hizbul Mujahideen (HM) are planning to “ensure” poll boycott in J&K, while Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) is trying to infiltrate terrorists into Kashmir ahead of the polls.

Sources claimed that several intercepts of JeM and HM spoke about enforcing poll boycott in the Valley and instructions have been passed on to the cadre to put posters wherever possible.

In the conversations, the local commanders have been asked by their handlers in Pakistan to take any step to ensure that the boycott is a success.

Another intelligence input suggested that the Communist Party of India-Maoist is planning to target leaders of Lalu Prasad-led Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) and Jharkhand Vikas Morcha (JVM) in Jharkhand.

Following the inputs, the state police and the paramilitary forces have already been deployed in the Maoist-affected state.

Jharkhand has been asked to provide foolproof security “to RJD and JVM leaders
and election rallies attended by them, sources said.

The five-phased elections to both the states will start on Tuesday and end on December 20. The counting of votes will be held on December 23.

The Home Ministry had earlier cleared a proposal to deploy 38,100 personnel from the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), Border Security Force (BSF), Indo-Tibetan Border Police, Central Industrial Security Force and the state police reserve in Jammu and Kashmir and another 13,600 personnel in Jharkhand for election related duty.

This is in addition to the existing deployment in both the states to tackle terrorism and Maoist menace.

Officials said about 65,000 CRPF personnel have already been deployed in J&K besides the Army, BSF and the Sashastra Seema Bal for counter-terror operations. In Jharkhand, there are around 25,000 CRPF personnel for anti-Maoist operations.

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