No Contradiction With CM: GOC12 June 2011
Srinagar: The General Officer Commanding (GOC), of Srinagar based 15 corps Lieutenant General Syed Atta Hasnain Sunday said that there was no contradiction in the statements of army and Chief Minister on the infiltration issue. Speaking to media persons on the sidelines of the annual day function of Army Good Will Public School at Lidroo here in south Kashmir the GOC said, “The army has not contradicted the statement of the Chief Minister. It was a mere discussion and sometimes we discuss it through media. Though some infiltration may have taken place this year but it is not on large scale.” About the number of militants operating in the state the GOC said, “As per our intelligence inputs there are not more than 700 militants active in the state out of which 500 are operating in the Valley and rest in the Jammu division. There are about 42 launching pads where the activities have been noted.” The GOC said that the situation had “improved a lot” and “militants are on the run” but he ruled out any possibility of troop cut in JK. “Different people may interpret stability in different ways. There are many who are of the opinion that stability will return to Afghanistan once the NATO forces leave from there but some argue that their presence is must for the peace to return. We can discuss the meaning of stability here too. Some people may argue that if the number of militants is less in the state then why there is a need of more soldiers. But the fact is that the less militants can bring more instability as it becomes very difficult to eliminate them,” Hasnain said. He claimed there was literally no militancy in south Kashmir except in Tral, Kellar and Sangarwani areas of Shopian. Regarding the change in strategy by the militants, GOC said, “Militants are occasionally firing from a point blank range but we are improving on the drills to counter their changing strategy”. On the Amarnath Yatra pilgrimage the GOC said, “The Army will ensure smooth Yatra. Though there is no apparent threat to the Yatra but we will increase the vigil to prevent any eventuality.” Hasnain said that the Army would always devote themselves to the service of Kashmiris. “The army has always been people friendly. There have been complaints of traffic jam on highways due to army convoys but we have reduced the size of convoys and changed its timing so that people don’t suffer,” he said. Earlier, the children of the Army Good will school, presented various programs including cultural activities and Marshal Arts. The students also displayed various scientific models. The GOC later distributed prizes among the students. He appreciated the progress of the institution and hoped that the school will compete with the best in the country. The GOC, Victor Force, General Gurdeep Singh and Commanding Officer (CO) 3RR, A S Bal and Deputy Commissioner, Islamabad (Anantnag) Kifayat Hussain Rizwi were also present on the occasion.