Two battalions of the Indian Army shifted out last week from the Kashmir Valley have been deployed in the mountainous Doda district of Jammu region, officials said on Tuesday.
The two battalions - one each from Qazigund, 80 km south of Srinagar, and the other from Handwara, 100 km north of Srinagar -- were shifted out last week, giving an impression that the troops were being reduced in Kashmir, where Kashmiri separatists and the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) have raised demands for the withdrawal of troops.
"Basically, we wanted these troops to launch an overall offensive in Doda district, where militants from the valley have shifted in large numbers in the past couple of months," an officer told IANS.
The shift is seen to serve two purposes. One, political and separatist groups in the valley were given the impression that the process of thinning out of troops had started.
More importantly, the offensive against militants in the difficult terrain, would get intensified.
"The results of shifting the troops would be known in the days to come in Doda district," the officer said.