Local Youth Being Misled To Join Militancy Via Social Media: Army

7 August 2014
The Tribune (Chandigarh)
Ehsan Fazili

Srinagar: The Army says despite a strong counter-infiltration grid in place along the Line of Control (LoC) resulting in a gradual decline in militancy in Kashmir, militant organisations are recruiting local youth by misguiding them through social media. 'Some educated youth have joined militancy following rumours in the social media,' said Lt Gen Subrata Saha in an interview with The Tribune after he took over as the GOC, 15 Corps, recently. He said that there were varying figures of educated youth joining the militant ranks. 'We are in the process of assessing the figures,' Lt General Saha said, adding that there was certainly a distinct decline in the level of militancy but local youth were being lured for recruitment by militant organisations. The General said the security agencies were aware of reports about the Al-Qaida and Taliban as graffiti in support of such organisations had appeared at some places in Kashmir. 'But that does not mean that they have come,' he said. However, he said, there was need to be cautious about any such developments. 'The intensity of attempts in terms of frequency and the number of infiltration attempts remains the same,' Lt General Saha said, adding that the terrorist infrastructure that supported infiltration across the LoC was intact. He said that because of the strong counter-insurgency grid and innovative troop deployment the attempts of infiltration by the armed militants had been contained. As part of the strong counter-infiltration grid, the troops killed four infiltrators in the Keran sector of Kupwara district in north Kashmir only last week. The infiltration of armed militants from across the LoC in Kashmir takes place usually during summer months every year, while there are very few attempts during winter months. The LoC, which passes through high mountains in north Kashmir, remains snowbound during the winter preventing movement and infiltration.