After 100 days of unrest, security forces have decided to go full throttle against the militants in Jammu and Kashmir.
The decision to resume the counter terrorist operations in the hinterland comes in the backdrop of growing number of militant attacks and intelligence inputs that the ultras are regrouping to take advantage of the current unrest in the valley.
A high level security meeting was held on Friday under the chairmanship of J&K Governor NN Vohra to review the security situation consequent to the terror attack at Pampore. Top army officers including Northern Army Commander Lt Gen DS Hooda, Director General of Police J&K K Rajendra Kumar, General officer Commanding 15 Corps Lt Gen SK Dua besides Intelligence Bureau head in J&K and senior paramilitary officers attended the meeting.
“It was agreed that surveillance should be enhanced not only along the International Border and Line of Control (LoC) but also in the entire hinterland. Counter-terrorist operations should be resumed and steps should be taken to safeguard all civil and military vital establishments in J&K,” said an official spokesperson.
For the last 100 days, the counter-terrorism operations have been severely hit with security forces concentrating on maintaining law and order and controlling the street violence.
Figures reveal that 39 militants have been killed since the unrest began on July 8 after the killing of Hizbul Mujahideen leader Burhan Wani in an encounter at Bamdoora village in South Kashmir’s Anantnag district. Among the 39, only eight ultras were killed in the hinterland. Thirty one militants were killed near the LoC, mostly during anti-infiltration operations.
Security forces suffered huge casualties in the militant attacks during the unrest. More than 37 security men were killed by the militants since the unrest began. Of the 15 gun fights that broke out, 11 took place near the LoC and only four in the hinterland. Most of the encounters ensued after militants attacked the forces.
Besides fidayeen attacks, the militants have launched shoot and scoot attacks to inflict casualties on the forces. Militants have been targeting the security forces deployed on the law and order duties in a bid to up the ante.
On Friday evening a Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) jawan was killed and eight others were injured when their convoy was attacked by ultras near Zakoora in the outskirts of Srinagar.
“Three companies were coming back in six vehicles. There were 130 to 138 people travelling in a convoy. Had they not fired back there could have been more casualties,” said Archana Ramasundaram, Director General of SSB.