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225 militants killed in J&K in 2020: DGP

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“Decline in infiltration, militancy-related incidents”

Jammu: Jammu and Kashmir has seen a decrease in militancy-related incidents, infiltration and civilian killings in 2020, while security forces carried out more than 100 “successful” counter-militancy operations killing 225 militants, Director General of Police Dilbag Singh said on Thursday.

Addressing the annual press conference of Jammu and Kashmir Police, Singh said, “We undertook over 100 successful operations in J&K. Ninety operations took place in Kashmir and 13 in Jammu. As many as 225 militants were killed — 207 in Kashmir and 18 in Jammu division.”

He said that among the slain militants, 47 were top commanders belonging to various outfits. “Today, all top commanders of various outfits have been eliminated,” he added.

The DGP said 16 Jammu and Kashmir Police personnel — 15 in Kashmir and one in Jammu — and 44 security forces jawans — 42 in Kashmir and two in Jammu — were killed while fighting militancy this year.

Singh said that police and security agencies have cracked down on overground workers (OGWs) of militant outfits, who throw grenades or work as messengers and couriers.

“As many as 635 OGWs were arrested and 56 out of them were booked under the Public Safety Act (PSA),” he said.

During the year, 299 militants and their associates were arrested and 12 militants surrendered, he informed.

The police chief said that 426 weapons, over 9,000 ammunition and magazines, and a huge cache of explosive material were recovered and seized during anti-militancy operations.

There has been a decrease in the number of civilian killings this year. “As many as 38 civilians were killed this year as compared to 44 last year,” Singh said.

He, however, said that there has been a slight increase in militant recruitment this year as compared to last year. “But 70 percent of them have either been eliminated or have left militant outfits and returned. As many as 46 militants have been arrested and 76 have been killed (among new recruits). Their shelf life is very less,” the DGP said.

He said that there is a large-scale decrease in the level of infiltrations this year. Due to the strong anti-infiltration grid, the infiltration is down, he said.

Singh said that Pakistan is trying to increase the arch of militancy to Jammu region and foment communal trouble here.

“There were a dozen militants active in the Jammu region, the number has reduced to three now. They are in Kishtwar district, we are tracking them,” Singh said.

The police chief further said that despite several attempts by Pakistan, cases of infiltration this year is the lowest in the last three-four years.

“So, they (Pakistan) had to rely on local recruits and they tried to supply weapons, explosive materials and cash to them through drones, most of these were foiled,” he said.

“The best thing is that the trend of local youths joining militant groups is constantly decreasing,” he added.

Lawaypora encounter: Will investigate families’ claim, says DGP

Srinagar: Director General of Police (DGP), Dilbagh Singh on Thursday said that he had no reason to dispute what a senior army official has stated about the Lawaypora encounter, but added that police will “still investigate the claims made by families of the slain trio.”

“I have no reason to dispute what the GoC Kilo Force (H S Sahi) has stated about the Lawaypora encounter. The families of two slain youth claimed that their children had gone to submit forms at a university, I want to ask them what were their children doing at encounter site if they had gone to submit a form,” DGP Singh said in reply to a query during a press conference at Jammu, as per news agency KNO.

GoC Sahi while addressing the media yesterday had stated that the slain trio was planning to carry out a big strike on the Srinagar-Baramulla highway and that they turned down repeated surrender offers.

The DGP said that at times families, especially parents of the children, are not aware about the activities of their wards. “We will still investigate allegations levelled by the families. If there is anything, we will probe that,” he said.

When asked that the families of the slain trio had stated that their wards were students and that police too admitted that the slain persons were not listed as militants, the DGP said: “It is not important that every militant is listed with the police. When a person leaves his home to join, he doesn’t tell his parents.”

Police and the army have claimed that three youth –Aijaz Ahmed Ganai, Ather Mushtaq, and Zubair Ahmed –were killed in an encounter at Lawaypora, near Hokerser on Srinagar outskirts on Wednesday.

However, soon after their killing, their families staged a protest outside Police Control Room (PCR) Srinagar stating that their wards were not militants but civilians.

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