Terrorists making ‘desperate attempts’ to infiltrate into J-K: Army chief
Indian Army chief General MM Naravane said on Saturday terrorists are finding out new ways to infiltrate into Jammu and Kashmir to “disrupt normal democratic processes”. Naravane, who did not name Pakistan, highlighted that despite continuous efforts being taken to ensure stability in the Union territory terrorism remains a serious threat.
“With the ongoing situation on our western borders, terrorism continues to be a serious threat, and that is not abating in spite of all efforts made. Terrorists making desperate attempts to infiltrate into Jammu and Kashmir to disrupt normal democratic processes,” Gen Naravane said, according to news agency ANI.
Army chief Naravane’s comments came at a time when Jammu and Kashmir is conducting its first polls after the abrogation of Article 370. The Union territory held the first phase of maiden elections to the District Development Councils (DDC) on Saturday where it recorded nearly 52% voter turnout. According to PTI, barring a small incident of stone pelting at Kulgam, the polls were held peacefully.
The army chief also said that terrorists are finding new means to enter into India and due to the rising snow levels, they are finding it difficult to enter from the northern regions and are now attempting to enter into India from the southern regions of the western border. “With the onset of winters, attempts are being made to infiltrate before the passes close and snow levels rise. It’s because of this that they have started moving southwards and are now attempting to infiltrate through lower regions including tunnels across the International Border,” he was quoted as saying by ANI.
Security forces in the last three months have detected two sophisticated tunnels in Jammu’s Samba sector. The first tunnel was discovered on August 29 and the second one was discovered by the Border Security Force (BSF) last week after four terrorists were killed at Ban Toll Plaza during a gun battle near Nagrota town of Jammu. BSF has also undertaken an anti-tunnel drive across the 3,300-km-long international border to stop cross-border infiltration and smuggling of drugs and arms and ammunitions.
A counter-insurgency officer told HT on Tuesday that despite there being an agreement between border security personnel of India and Pakistan to cut long grass on either side of the respective borders Pakistan border security personnel continue to use the long grass as a cover to send drugs, terror elements and arms and ammunition to India.