Army chief visits Valley, reviews situation

Army chief Gen Bipin Rawat in Srinagar on Monday.
Army chief Gen Bipin Rawat in Srinagar on Monday.

Excelsior Correspondent

Srinagar, May 1:  Chief of Army Staff (COAS), General Bipin Rawat, today arrived in Srinagar for two days visit to review situation in Kashmir amid rising militancy and protests.
The Army chief was accompanied by the Northern Army Commander, Lt General D Anbu and Chinar Corps Commander, Lt General JS Sandhu during his visit. They visited Panzgam Garrison in North Kashmir’s Kupwara district that was attacked by Fidayeen last week in which three Army personnel were killed and Army eliminated two of them. He was briefed by the Sector Commander on the attack and the way Army prevented them from carrying further damage. The Army chief took stock of the enhanced security measures in and around the garrison so as to prevent such attacks in future.
Later, in Srinagar Lt General Sandhu briefed the Army Chief on the prevailing situation in Kashmir at Badami Bagh Cantonment. He was given detailed account of infiltration attempts by militants along the LoC and was told that this year the infiltration has started earlier and around 200 militants are waiting for the infiltration at the launch pads on the LoC ready to infiltrate. He was told that Army is on high alert along the LoC to prevent infiltration.
The GOC briefed him about the measures taken by the Army to prevent infiltration of militants into Kashmir. He was briefed about the strengthened infiltration grid along the LoC. He was also briefed about the damage caused to the fence by the heavy snowfall and efforts to conduct necessary repairs.
The Army chief was briefed about the situation in the hinterland where this year despite stone pelting protests Army managed to conduct successful operations and eliminated large number of militants. He was told that the police and para-military forces are handling the mobs during the operations and Army is focused on the operations against the militants.
Army chief stressed for avoiding collateral damage during the operations and asked the Army commanders at ground level to conduct intelligence based, surgical operations so that there is no room for collateral damage.
Lt Gen Rawat appreciated the synergy being shown amongst all security agencies and complimented the troops for undertaking operations with firmness and resolve.
The Army chief later visited the Army’s 92- Base Hospital in BB Cantt where he enquired about the health of soldiers recuperating and wished them all a speedy recovery. These soldiers were injured in various operations in Kashmir.
The Commander in Chief impressed upon everyone to continue their positive engagement with the people and provide them assistance when required. He was also briefed about Army’s various programmes aimed at engaging the youth of the Valley so that they don’t fall prey to militancy.


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