Kupwara, Bandipora, Ganderbal militancy free: ADGP

Two IEDs defused in Kulgam

Excelsior Correspondent

Srinagar, Nov 26: Three districts in Kashmir are militancy free and Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) and Jaish-e-Mohammed, have gone headless after security forces neutralised their operatives and commanders
Additional Director General of Police (Kashmir zone) Vijay Kumar while interacting with a group of visiting journalists at the Police Control Rroom here said that three districts of Bandipora, Kupwara and Ganderbal are militancy free as there are no active militants in these districts.
He said there are 81 militants at present in Kashmir with 29 being local while 52 are of foreign origin (Pakistanis).
The ADGP said that the security forces have an upper hand now when it comes to containing militancy. “We are working to bring the figure of active, foreign and hybrid militancy to less than 50 in the near future,” the officer said.
He said that in next two years security forces will wipe out militancy from Kashmir.
Kumar said the LeT and JeM are currently headless after the security forces neutralised their ranks in multiple encounters and operations.
The ADGP added that there were about 15-18 active hybrid militants in Kashmir. He said that most of these are in South Kashmir areas of Pulwama, Shopian, Kulgam and Anantnag districts.
“We have busted as many as 119 modules this year,” ADGP Kumar said.
An official said that Farooq Nalli, a Hizbul Mujahideen top operative, is the only active commander — since 2015 — and he is on the radar of the security forces.
A police official said that 80 top commanders were active in Kashmir about two years ago, there are only three now. Apart from Nalli, the two others are inactive.
The police said their main area of concern in Kashmir for security forces is that the militants are picking up soft targets like non local labourers and Kashmiri Pandits.
“We have, however, ensured that those who target labourers and members of the Pandit community are neutralised immediately and also that they are not kept safe as much as possible,” police said.
Another concern for the police is the recent seizure of some Turkey-made pistols, which is an indicator that Pakistan-based handlers are providing weapons of that country to militants operating in Kashmir.
According to latest police data, there were 99 local recruitments in militant ranks in Kashmir this year, an all-time low over the last six years.
Out of these, 64 were killed and 17 arrested, the data said.
The comparative figures are: 136 in 2021, 167 in 2020, 140 in 2019, 201 in 2018, 147 in 2017 and 95 in 2016.
Twenty-nine civilians were killed by militants this year and these included three Kashmiri Pandits and Hindus each, 15 Muslims, apart from six non-local Hindus and two non-local Muslims.
The officials said security situation in the Valley has improved drastically as there have been no bandhs, no major internet shutdowns, no stone pelting incidents and zero killings of civilians during operations of the security forces post the abrogation of Article 370 in 2019.
A total of 169 militants (127 local and 42 foreign) have been killed in Kashmir this year, the data said.
Meanwhile, forces today detected and diffused two Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) in Kulgam district, officials said.
The IEDs — one was a timer device and the other a sticky bomb — were detected in Frisal Yaripora area of the South Kashmir district, they said.
The area has been cordoned off and further searches underway, they said.