Pak army, ISI behind CRPF convoy bombing: Lt Gen Dhillon

GOC 15 Corps Lt Gen KJS Dhillon addressing a press conference in Srinagar on Tuesday. -Excelsior/Shakeel
GOC 15 Corps Lt Gen KJS Dhillon addressing a press conference in Srinagar on Tuesday. -Excelsior/Shakeel

‘Anyone picking up gun will be killed’

Infiltration on from IB in Jammu

Fayaz Bukhari
SRINAGAR, Feb 19: Army today said that Pakistan army and its Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) is behind the Thursday car bombing and warned of retribution and declared that anyone picking up gun will be eliminated.
Lieutenant General KJS Dhillon, 15- Corps Commander of Army told a news conference here that Jaish-e-Mohammad leadership that planned and executed attack on CRPF convoy was eliminated in yesterday’s gun battle at Pinglan a Pulwama.
The GOC said that the attack carried out last week was being controlled from Pakistan with an active support of ISI and Pakistan army. He said that ever since the attack was carried out, troops were tracking the top JeM leadership in Kashmir valley.
“The militants killed yesterday most of them Pakistanis who were incharge of controlling, coordinating and fabricating and execution of the Lethpora attack were main people of JeM in the Valley,” he said, adding that on specific information in midnight, they killed the module.

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The GOC said that the leadership of the JeM was eliminated within 100 hours after the attack. “I am happy to inform the country that in less than 100 hours, the top JeM leadership has been killed, which was being handled by JeM from Pakistan,” he added. He said that Karmran was chief commander of JeM and was handled by the ISI and Pakistan.
He said that this type of attack took place after long time. “This happened first time here and it happens in Afghanistan and Syria and we are going to deal with such kind of attacks”, he said.
The Army Commander urged the mothers of local militants who have picked up guns here to appeal their sons to return and get back to the mainstream, saying that “in Kashmir society, mothers have a great role to play.”
“I would request all the mothers in Kashmir to please request their sons who have joined terrorism to surrender and get back to the mainstream,” Dhillon said.
The GOC said that there is surrender policy for local militants while as those coming from Pakistan won’t return alive. “There is no Gazi. Gazis come and go and anyone coming here won’t go alive”, he said.
When asked about the casualties suffered by the security forces yesterday, the GOC said that they took place as the troops didn’t want collateral damage. “The civilian killed in the encounter was from terrorist firing”, he added. He said that the officers are leading from the front and that is one of the reason for casualties.
Referring to infiltration attempts, he said there was not much activity along the Line of Control due to snowfall and terrain conditions over the past month but Pakistan has been pushing in infiltrators from other routes on the Jammu side.
“There has been infiltration on the other routes, that is from the International Border sector and South of Jammu in the area of Samba, Hiranagar and Pathankot sector. That infiltration is continuing… Pakistan is carrying out infiltration into Kashmir for the results they want.”
Nonetheless, the numbers have reduced in the recent past, Dhillon said.
IGP Kashmir Zone, SP Pani said the Pulwama encounter was an excellent operation as the coordination was reflected on the ground. “Three militants of JeM were killed in the gunfight while as investigational details of the case and recovery in the operation will be shared after investigation progresses,” he said.
Pani said they are fully focused on JeM and last year 58 JeM militants were killed here while 12 militants out of 31 killed this year so far were affiliated with JeM. He said that they prevent several attacks and there was not even a single suicidal attack of that nature of attack by JeM in 2018. “We are trying our level best (to prevent attacks),” he said.
Asked about recruitment in militancy, IGP Pani said the recruitment has significantly came down for last few months, adding that recruitment has seen a visible dip and it will gradually go down.
IGP Pani further said families are playing key role to bring their sons back. “Community, family has a great role to play,” he added.
He further stated that security scenario has improved in the Valley while as terror elements have been crushed. “We are given a strong investigation measures and we are acting tough on the co-conspirators in generating recent kind of action”, he said.

‘Army Comdrs led from the front’
Brigadier Harbir Singh, who was injured in an operation against Jaish-e-Mohammad terrorists on Monday in Pulwama district of Jammu and Kashmir, had cut short his leave to lead his soldiers from the front, a senior Army officer said today.
“Brigadier Harbir Singh, who is among the injured, was on leave at home. When he realised at midnight that the operation has started, he cut short his leave voluntarily and rejoined,” General Officer Commanding of Army’s 15 Corps Lt Gen K J S Dhillon told reporters here.
“He (Brigadier Singh) came back to Kashmir and went straight to the operational site. He was leading his men from the front. DIG Amit Kumar (who was also injured) again was leading his men from the front and you would see from the injuries to our officers, it shows our Commanders were leading the operation from the front and we were able to achieve nil civilian casualties,” Lt Gen Dhillon said.
He said the Army officers will continue to lead from the front during operations in future as well. (PTI)

Soldier succumbs
An Army personnel, who was critically injured in a gun battle seven days ago at Ratnipora area of Pulwama in South Kashmir, today succumbed to injuries in Badami Bagh Cantonment hospital here.
The soldier Sandeep Kumar of 10 PARA succumbed to injuries at army’s 92 base hospital Badamibagh here where he was under going treatment.