Srinagar: The Army on Wednesday claimed that there has been a sharp increase in the infiltration bids by militants from across the Line of Control (LoC) and International Border (IB) after August 5.
Addressing a press conference, General Officer Commanding (GOC) of 15 Corps Lieutenant General KJS Dhillon said the troops apprehended two Pakistani Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) militants on August 1 when they were trying to infiltrate from Gulmarg Sector along the LoC.
The army commander also released two videos in which the duo is seen confessing to being Pakistani militants.
“There have been desperate attempts by Pakistan to push militants with an aim to disturb peace in the valley. On August 1, we apprehended two Pakistani LeT militants, Khaleel Ahmad and Mohammad Nazim, from the Gulmarg sector,” he said.
Lt Gen Dhillon said troops have also recovered IED material and wireless set from the apprehended militants. He said launch pads across the LoC, particularly in Poonch and Rajouri sectors, are filled with militants who are waiting to infiltrate.
“There are attempts by militants to infiltrate with the help and guidance of Pakistan army. Pakistani citizens are being pushed into the valley by Pakistan army to disrupt peace especially after August 5,” he said.
The GOC said the forces have “neutralized” many militants while attempting to infiltrate from across the LoC. “We have neutralized militants and a message was also sent to Pakistani DGMO on the hotline to take their bodies. But they refused like they did during Kargil war,” he said.
Lt Gen Dhillon, however, said not a single infiltration bid by militants has succeeded so far. “The army is ready to respond to every attempt by Pakistan army and ISI. Let ISI try everything, they will be given a befitting reply. They will be taught a lesson, better than that of 1971,” he said.
Denying that militants have entered from the Gulmarg sector, the army commander said that around 350 operations were launched by the troops, but not a single infiltrator was successful to sneak into the valley.
Lt Gen Dhillon said Pakistan army has stepped up the ceasefire violations along the LoC after August 5. “Soon after Balakote strike, Pakistan army violated ceasefire on March 12 and then on July 13. After August 5, there have been two to three incidents of ceasefire violations by Pakistan army,” he said.
On the occasion, Additional Director General of Police (ADGP) Law and Order, Munir Ahmad Khan said the confession of two militants make it clear that infiltration attempts are taking place.
Khan said they have succeeded in maintaining law and order in the valley by avoiding civilian causalities. “Credit goes to all the forces who worked hard to maintain law and order. There have not been any major law and order incident as rumour-mongering was prevented by snapping mobile and landline connectivity,” he said.
Asked whether they have halted anti-militancy operations due to the blockade of mobile phone connectivity, Khan said security forces have changed the style of anti-militancy operations.
“Maybe the style of anti-militancy operations have changed now. There have been a lot of surrenders during the period. We consider it a success when we capture a local militant,” he said.
On being asked about the release of political and trade leaders, he said the decision will be taken after assessing the situation. “We will consider all the pros and cons and then take any decision,” he said
On the death of a local civilian in Soura, Khan said the investigation into the case is underway.
“Asrar (civilian of Soura) was injured on August 6 when he was hit by a stone at 90 feet Soura. Initially, his health improved. But today he succumbed,” Khan said.