The militant killings in Kashmir have seen a decline this year compared to last year as 141 ultras have been neutralised in the first nine months of this year compared to 207 in the corresponding period in 2020.
Official figures reveal that from January this year to September, 141 militants and two civilians were killed in 76 encounters between security forces and ultras in the Valley. Four militants have also surrendered during the live encounters in different parts of Kashmir during the same period.
In the same period last year (January 2020 to September 2020), 207 militants had been killed in 96 encounters across Kashmir. However, last year there were no civilian killings during the encounters and as many as 12 militants had surrendered during the live encounters, the figures reveal.
Kashmir police chief Vijay Kumar said that as top commanders of Lashkar-e-Toiba, Jaish-e-Mohammad and Hizbul Mujahideen and other militant outfits were neutralised by security forces, their network has been dismantled.
“It has also had an effect on the recruitment which has witnessed a decline. Preventing local youths from joining militant ranks by security agencies is another reason for decline in recruitment into militancy,” he said.
A senior police official, who wished to remain anonymous, told DH that of over 200 currently active militants, 80 are believed to be from Pakistan and more than 120 are locals. “Between January and July this year, 76 locals picked up arms and by now the number may have reached 100,” he said.
“The local recruitment into militancy is still happening although not at the scale of 2017 or 2018. We have to keep a watch on developments as Taliban’s takeover in Afghanistan is sure to have some impact in Kashmir, if not this year, maybe in coming years,” the officer warned.