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HindustanTimes Wed,17 Sep 2014

Army on high alert as number of infiltration bids increases in valley

Toufiq Rashid, Hindustan Times  Srinagar, August 04, 2013
First Published: 12:51 IST(4/8/2013) | Last Updated: 12:52 IST(4/8/2013)

The army is on high alert along the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir as a number of infiltration bids have been made by the militants in the past one week.

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According to army officials, a number of trained militants are present at the launching pads across the border, ready to sneak into the valley.

An official who did not want to be named said: "Handlers in Pakistan are desperately trying to push in as many militants as possible before the passes close after snowfall in winter."

Following intelligence inputs about presence of large number of militants at the launching pads, the army has sounded an alert.

The step was taken immediately after the troops shot dead five infiltrating militants in Keran Sector on July 9.

The number of contacts between security forces and militants has increased along the LOC.

On Saturday, two militants and a soldier were killed in a gunbattle along the Line of Control in Kupwara late Friday night.

The fresh infiltration bid, which took place in Tangdhar sector of Kupwara in North Kashmir, has taken the number of militants killed in the various counter-infiltration operations in the north Kashmir district to 14 in the past five days.

While army says 13 bodies of militants have been recovered, one militant is believed to have died across the border.

Large amount of arms and ammunition has also been recovered from them.

Officials also believe that death of Jaish Kashmir chief Qari Yasir has also had an impact.

The official said: "Most top commanders in the valley are dead, so militant organisations are desperate to push in people who can take their place. In order to maintain the level of violence, the militants need to be present in certain numbers in the valley."

"While the number were in thousands at one point of time, it has now reduced to just around 300,'' he added.

The army also believes that Yasir's death has had an impact on the coordination on infiltration.

"He used to be the receiving commander for all organisations here,'' he added.

Besides sources in the army also believe that the changing dynamics in Pakistan can also have an impact on the infiltration.

"There is a new government and we don't know what their policy would be,'' the official added.


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