September 2001 News

J&K witnesses drop in militant activities

15 September 2001
The Statesman

Jammu: There is a sharp drop in militant activities and militants are expected to lie low for the next couple of months in Jammu and Kashmir with various militant training camps being closed down in PoK for the time being and the USA tightening its noose around Pakistan. However, the militants are not shying away from expressing their joy over the success achieved by their icon Osama bin Laden in attacking USA and the death of Afghan rebel leader, Ahmad Shah Masood. Sources said security forces in the Valley have intercepted the militants’ constant messages on the wireless saying : “Fidayeen ki hath, duniya ka badshah” (the world’s superpower in the hands of the suicide squads). Security forces in the Valley are on alert. Extra precautions have been taken including increase in vigilance, patrolling and mobility. Mr Venkaiah Naidu was to visit Srinagar on Thursday and Uma Bharati on Friday. Both visits were cancelled. Highly places sources said security forces had intercepted messages from across the the border asking foreign terrorists to return to their respective training camps. Since Tuesday when terrorists struck in the USA, there has been a considerable decline in militancy- related incidents. Brigadier General Staff, 16 Corps, PC Das confirmed this. “Militants are running away from the security forces and we are chasing them out,” said the BGS adding that if the foreign element is reduced, there would further be a considerable decline in militancy in the state. However, the BGS said that the next one week would be crucial and there can be a spurt in militancy in the next few days. “The militants who would be returning to their bases, would like to use all their stocks of explosives and ammunition before going back and thus they would be on a killing spree”, he said. The security forces, he said, were tying up the obvious ends and without logistics support to militants from across the border, even the local element would find itself in a difficult situation. Expressing similar views, Dr Surinder Singh, former inspector general, BSF, said though Pakistan would not close shop in the state, there would be a considerable decrease in militancy related activities. But once they start regrouping themselves after the US retaliations, they would return. The former director general of Jammu and Kashmir police, Mr MM Khajooria, however, felt that the frustrated ultras who are definitely feeling lost at present would go in for soft targets in near future. “I have great apprehension that those terrorists who cannot retaliate before a powerful enemy in Afghanistan , would definitely strike in Jammu and Kashmir,” he said. The All Parties Hurriyat Conference is keeping silent over Pakistan’s decision to fully cooperate with the USA in attacking bin Laden through Pakistani airspace and from the Pakistani airbases. “We are going to discuss the issue in the executive council meeting next week and till then we would not like to comment on it”, said an APHC spokesman. The APHC is in a fix. Pakistan supported APHC’s “freedom struggle” morally and otherwise, and now it has agreed to cooperate and attack the Muslim icon.


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