50 armed militants may have infiltrated into Kashmir

50 armed militants may have infiltrated into Kashmir

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As reports of infiltration of nearly 50 heavily armed militants from Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir (PoK) into the valley have emerged, security agencies have stepped up vigil in the state.

Sources told DH that in the recent weeks, several groups of militants have managed to infiltrate into the Valley from the Line of Control (LoC). “Security forces are apprehensive that these well trained and heavily armed militants have been sent to carry out deadly fidayeen (suicide) attacks in Kashmir,” they said.

Since middle of August, there have been several infiltrations attempts by the militants at various places along the LoC. “As shelling and firing on the LoC from both sides have increased in the recent weeks, militants are taking advantage of it to infiltrate. Army has foiled several infiltration bids recently along the LoC. However, a few have succeeded,” sources said.

There are also unconfirmed reports of several local youths joining militant ranks in the recent weeks. “Militant handlers are taking advantage of the prevailing situation in the valley after the Center revoked Article 370 and motivating youth to join them. There are reports that several youths are missing from their homes and may have joined militants,” they added.

State police chief Dilbagh while confirming that there has been a spurt in infiltration bids said several of them have been foiled. “We are looking into the possibility whether some (infiltrators) may have crossed over,” he said.

However, Singh refuted reports of any fresh recruitment of local youth joining militant ranks in the Valley. “There have been no reports of any fresh local recruitment among the militant ranks. Some youth had been misled (in the past) and in a fit of anger gone astray, and we have been able to bring many of them back,” he told reporters here.

An army officer said due to the snapping of mobile and internet services has affected the anti-militancy operational in the Valley. “Most of the source network is down as phones are not working. This is also being seen as one of the reasons as to why no major encounters have taken place in the past five weeks,” he said. 

The officer said there are reports that Pakistan has moved hundreds of militants near the launch pads in the past few weeks. “They are trying to push them in. We are trying to track all their movements,” he added.

Recently Army foiled major terror plot hatched jointly by Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) militants and Pakistani troops by eliminating five members of the Border Action Team (BAT) along the LoC in Keran sector of Kupwara district.

Video footage of 1.51 minutes released by the Army showed bodies of five militants, who were killed by the troops while thwarting infiltration attempt by the Jaish militants, all of whom were members of the BAT and were trying to intrude into the Indian territory to target forward posts of the Army sometime in August.

The slain unidentified militants were equipped with a large number of arms, ammunition and explosives and planned to target forward defence posts of the Army along the LoC.

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