Step up anti-terror ops in Jammu and Kashmir: NSA Ajit Doval to forces
National Security Adviser Ajit Doval on Saturday carried out a complete operational review of the security situation in Jammu and Kashmir and told top army commanders and paramilitary forces to tighten the counter-infiltration grid along the Line of Control (LoC) with Pakistan and the counter-insurgency network in the Kashmir valley.
The high-level meeting was convened against the backdrop of militant activity in north Kashmir’s Handwara, Baramulla and Sopore triangle that cost lives of six soldiers including, a colonel-rank officer. It is also in this region that the security forces eliminated a top Lashkar terrorist, Haider.
Then there is an intelligence alert about plans by the terror group Jaish-e-Mohammed to carry out simultaneous suicide attacks at army and paramiliary bases on Monday, May 11.
Top government officials told HT that the NSA also took note of the increased air activity by the Pakistan Air Force along India’s western border that coincided with Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan, and later the foreign office in Islamabad releasing statement that alleged India was looking for a “pretext for a false flag operation targeting Pakistan”.
Officials said there was consensus that the Imran Khan government’s effort to distance itself from the terrorists it supports was a pre-emptive move and indicated a renewed push from Pakistani terror launch pads over the next few weeks.
The meeting noted how Pakistan was funding outfits such as The Resistance Front or the JK Pir Panjal Peace Forum to claim that terrorism in the valley was indigenous and not sponsored by it. An official said, placing the Pakistan Air Force on high alert was also designed to further Imran Khan’s narrative that asks the international community to intervene lest there is a confrontation between the two nuclear-armed neighbours. The NSA also told officials to step up the engagement with terrorists in the Kashmir valley.
The five-hour-long meeting was attended by, among others, Army chief General Manoj Mukund Naravane, Intelligence Bureau director Arvinda Kumar, Research and Analysis Wing chief Samant Kumar Goel, Border Security Force director general SS Deswal and Central Reserve Police Force chief AK Maheshwari.
A senior counter-terror official told HT that the meeting analysed the infiltration routes used by terrorists from Pakistan and suggested tweaks at the ground level that could ensure that the terrorists were detected.