60 Militants Active In North Kashmir: Lt Gen Dua

24 November 2015
The Daily Excelsior

Srinagar: Army today said that at least 60 militants are active in North Kashmir where an Army operation is going on for past two weeks in Kupwara forests against a group of highly trained Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) militants. The General Officer Commanding (GOC) 15 Corps, Lt General Satish Dua told reporters on the sidelines of a function in North Kashmir's Handwara town that there are 50 to 60 militants active in North Kashmir. It may be mentioned here that security forces killed 56 militants in North Kashmir this year including those who were killed along the Line of Control (LoC) while infiltrating. Replying to a query about Manigah forests operation that is going on for past 11 days, Lt General Dua said that Army has tightened the noose around the group in the forests after their infiltration. 'This operation is going on for past few days and one of our officers was martyred and one terrorist was also shot dead. They are not able to go out of this area after infiltration', said the GOC. Lt General Dua said that Army does not use heavy weaponry during the operations to avoid collateral damage. He said that Army in its operations against militants ensures that there is no collateral damage. 'It is why we suffer damages and you see in operations our jawans get injured', he added. 'Indian Army officers and men have always led from the front for the safety of nation,' the GOC said. Lt General Dua said that operations against militants in Kashmir are conducted with the cooperation of the local people. He said that Army is for the protection of the people. 'Army is there and for them and whenever there is operation, it is because of cooperation of the people', he added. Earlier, Army today organized a multi-disciplinary event at Sheikh-ul-Alam Environment Awareness Centre at Handwara area of North Kashmir's Kupwara district. The event was inaugurated by 15 Chinar Corps Commander, Lt Gen Satish Dua amidst a galaxy of eminent figures from the Army, police, civil administration and local populace, said a Defence spokesman. 'The event included a blood donation camp, free medical camp including Ayush, Naturopathy and dental checkup, distribution of medical aids to include wheelchairs, awareness camps on road safety and drug menace. In addition career counseling for the youth was also organized besides display of Army equipment as an awareness drive,' he said. The Defence spokesman said the event was a testimony to the collaborative spirit of all Government agencies like Army, civil administration, police and other paramilitary forces which came together to provide a holistic package of health care and education on a wide spectrum of socio- economic issues to the people of this region. On the occasion, eight schools of Handwara region were presented with a computer each to extend and encourage computer literacy among the students of remote areas and to equip the next generation to move forward in their future endeavors the spokesman said. 'Over 400 people benefitted from specialist medical treatment and advice,' he added. Congratulating all agencies involved for the superlative effort in mitigating the problems of the people, the Corps Commander reiterated Army's commitment towards the betterment of the people of Kashmir.