November 2003 News

75 Pc Of Militants In J&K Foreigners

8 November 2003
The Times of India

Srinagar: More than 75 per cent of the militants active in J&K are foreigners, and the situation in the state would further improve once infiltration from across the border was stopped, BSF Inspector General Vijay Raman said. 'A sea change is visible in the normalcy standard in Jammu and Kashmir now as compared to yesteryear but we have to stop infiltration from across the border to ensure further improvement in the situation,' Raman told reporters here at a function on Friday evening. More than 75 per cent of the militants active in J&K were foreigners and their entry from across the borders had to be stopped, he said adding the number of foreign militants active in the state outnumber the local militants. About the government decision to move BSF to the borders Raman said, 'BSF is going back to work they are meant for... to guard the borders. BSF would gradually move to borders to stop infiltration from across the border and pave the way for CRPF to take over anti-insurgency operations in the state,' he said. Raman said eight BSF battalions presently deployed in downtown Srinagar would be replaced by CRPF by middle of November. Praising the force for its integrity, Raman said the men did their best in preventing the situation from going out of control in the Valley. BSF has killed 2040 militants from 1990 to October 2003. The force arrested 9525 militants while 918 surrendered during the same period. The weapons recovered by the force included 5495 weapons of all types besides 7 lakh rounds of assorted ammunition, 785 wireless sets, 6950 kg of explosive, 986 pieces of IEDS during this period. This year alone till October BSF killed 109 militants, including 61 Pakistanis, arrested 199 militants and recovered 241 weapons of all varieties, 100 wireless sets, about 350 kg of explosive, Raman said. However, he said these successes have taken its price as BSF had to sacrifice the lives of 668 personnel besides 3191 injured from 1990 to 2003. Whereas in 2003 alone 24 BSF personnel attained martyrdom and 102 personnel were injured in their efforts. Admitting that it was not easy to fight a proxy war, Raman said inspite of all hurdles the force had managed to kill Gazi Baba, mastermind of the Akshardham attack and several other senior commanders of various outfits. Besides containing militancy, BSF is also involved in civic action programmes mainly consisting of free medical camps and construction of facility projects, he said. Realizing that the youth is the future of tomorrow, BSF has been promoting exposure of Kashmiri youths to other parts of the country, he said, adding so far 200 students have been benefited by this project.


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