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Army is needed in Kashmir: official

india Updated: Apr 03, 2011 19:14 IST

PTI
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Presence of Army in the Valley is needed as there is an "existential" border threat, a senior official of the force said on Sunday, even as he ruled out a military solution to Kashmir issue.

"Our requirement is here. This is an existential threat here... this is a border threat. Border threats are much greater than internal threats," Lt Gen Syed Ata Hasnain, General Officer Commanding of Srinagar-based 15 Corps, told reporters on the sidelines of his meet-the-people function here, 85 km from Srinagar.

He, however, maintained Kashmir issue cannot be solved militarily.

"I don't think the state, the Indian Union, has ever looked upon this situation as if it can be resolved militarily. India has always felt that the army and the military is here to stabilise the turbulence and there after it has to be a political solution."

He said no problem in the world which involves people has been resolved militarily. "Military has a role to ensure that environment becomes stable."

Hasnain said there is "not enough" Army presence in the Valley and hence the armed forces could not be sent to Naxal-affected regions of India.

"The whole problem of Naxalism is in central India, it is not on the border of India. And the Army's role is primarily on the border of India," he said when asked why the force is not joining in operations against the Maoists.

The Army official said the militant camps across the Line of Control (LoC) are active and filled with ultras who will try to infiltrate once the snow melts in the mountains.

"We are aware that camps are full (with militants) there. The militancy has dropped but the situation has not changed. Militancy is still very much present here," he added.