Local militant recruitment on decline: Lt Gen Singh
Army’s Northern Command chief Lt Gen Ranbir Singh Thursday said the counter infiltration grid at the Line of Control (LoC) upto the hinterland of Valley is very effective and it is because of this grid that forces have been able to killed large number of militants in Kashmir.
"Our operations have continued unabated whether it is counter infiltration grid on the LoC, wherein we have a multiple layered and a very effective counter infiltration grid, or in the hinterland. It is the reason that we have been successful in killing a number of infiltrators on or near LoC," Singh told reporters on sidelines of Gulmarg Winter Youth Festival 2019.
He said more than 250 militants were killed, 50 apprehended and 5 surrendered in 2018.
"In the hinterlands of the Valley, our operations are working on intelligence based surgical operations and the credit goes to 'Awaam' and youth of the Kashmir. Due to flow of information, we have been able to achieve huge success in last one year," Singh said.
He said recruitment of local militants witnessed a relative decline in last 4-5 months as very few youth have joined militant rank.
"Due to sustained efforts of state government and forces, teachers, parents and elderly citizens, the recruitment of local youth in militant ranks is on decline,” he said.
Referring to use of social media platforms to 'radicalise' youth in Jammu and Kashmir, Singh said, “A section of people are using social media to a larger extent to radicalise youth in the Valley. Both forces and state government is taking every possible measure to stop such people from radicalising the youth.”
"Social media has been an issue of concern in past also. We are putting in various measures both at central and state level to check it. Army is a step ahead in tackling the radicalisation of youth through social media platforms. Such people take our youth to a wrong path and give them fake feeling that they will get Azadi through this. The energy of youth needs to be channelised in a right direction for the betterment of state and country,” he said.
Warning Pakistan against any misadventure, Lt Gen Singh said Pakistan army has been initiating the ceasefire violations at the LoC to help the infiltrators to cross over to this side.
"Pakistan army often helps infiltrators to cross over to this side by giving cover fire. However, we give them a befitting reply whenever and wherever it is needed. We have been successful in keeping our enemies under tremendous pressure,” he added.