No immediate impact of Afghan events on Kashmir: Army

Excelsior Correspondent
SRINAGAR Apr 16:Army today dismissed fears of any immediate effect of Afghan events in Kashmir, but warned of its long term impact on the situation of the valley.
General Officer Commanding of Srinagar-based 15 Corps Lt Gen SA Hasnain told reporters at Badamibagh Cantonment during the launch of Kashmir Premier League in Sriangar: “There is no immediate effect at all.”
The Army Commander was replying to a question about the recent Taliban resurgence in Afghanistan and its impact on Kashmir.
The General said there were no indicators to suggest that the events in Afghanistan, including yesterday’s attacks by Taliban in Kabul and other provincial capitals, will have any effect on Kashmir.
He said that there are events which lead to certain things and there are events which put together give certain indicators. “There is no such indicator about anything in Afghanistan immediately happening which can have an effect on Kashmir,” he added.
Lt. Gen. Hasnain however, said there will be long-term effects of Afghanistan situation on Kashmir. “In the long-term, yes. I have always maintained that an event in one place will have a ripple effect somewhere else. Those ripples are yet to reach here, time will tell. But I am sure the ripples will reach here.”
The GOC dispelled fears that separatist posters appearing in certain places in the Valley could affect the security situation.
He said “First of all, we are too used to these posters. If the army fears poster warfare then the army should sit forever. The fact is that the people do not heed these poster messages.”
About the possibility of violence erupting around the forthcoming municipal elections, the General said: “During the panchayat elections too, some violence had happened. The political activity at the grassroots level has to continue, and for that the police jointly with the army are responsible for creating a conducive atmosphere.”
About his stand on the controversial Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) which Chief Minister Omar Abdullah wants to be repealed in a phased manner from the state, the GOC said: “We have made our stance on AFSPA clear, and I do not need to repeat it here.”

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