Seventy-four foreign militants are presently active in Jammu and Kashmir, the state government has revealed in reply to a RTI query of Rising Kashmir.
“There are 74 foreign militants presently active in the state which is equal to 40 percent of total militants active in Jammu and Kashmir,” official documents reveal.
Earlier, J&K police had said there are 185 militants active in J&K and 40 percent of them are foreign militants.
In the beginning of 2013, Army had claimed activity of 325 militants in J&K as per the inputs from intelligence agencies of which 60 percent were believed to be foreigners.
However, during 2014-15, the official reply reveals 40 percent militants are of foreign origin while 60 percent are local recruits, clearly hinting at more local youth joining militancy.
In 2010, police had said that 60 foreign militants were active in North Kashmir’s Sopore area alone.
Regarding the number of foreign militants imprisoned in the various jails of state, Jammu and Kashmir Prisons Department revealed that 51 foreign militants include Pakistanis, Afghans, Saudi Arabians and Bangladeshi militants are lodged in various jails in the state.
“51 foreign militants have been arrested alive by different security agencies and have been imprisoned after being found involved in militancy related incidents leading to violence in past two years,” the officials revealed in reply to Rising Kashmir RTI query.
Providing details regarding foreign militants imprisoned in J&K jails during the period of 2014-2015, the officials in a written reply to the RTI query said 35 foreign militants were imprisoned in 2014 while 16 were arrested in 2015 till September 15.
They further revealed that the prisoners presently facing trial in cases in Jammu and Kashmir are normally lodged in state prisons but some foreign nationals detained under Public Safety Act (PSA) are also lodged in jails outside the state.
“Besides 51 foreign nationals, many foreign militants are also imprisoned in jails outside the state. These cases are usually those which are under PSA. Such cases of the foreign-suspected militants jailed outside are usually transferred to courts outside the state for speedy trial and some are given to national investigating agency in case of high profile militants,” the official documents reveal.
Moreover, 108 foreign militants- - 97 Pakistanis, nine Afghans and one each from Saudi Arabia and Bangladesh were arrested and later lodged in different jails in many states of India since the onset of militancy.