Militancy-related violence has reduced by over 50% in J&K: Army officer

Srinagar: Militancy-related violence has reduced by over 50% in Jammu and Kashmir and the Army’s role in the valley is diminishing, a senior officer of the force said on Thursday.

Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of a programme organised by the Army in the Handwara area of north Kashmir’s Kupwara district, General Officer Commanding (GOC) of the Srinagar-based 15 Corps Lieutenant General DP Pandey said criminal elements controlled from across the border and by enemies within the country are trying to instill fear among people by killing unarmed persons.

“All the parameters of violence in Kashmir have come down by over 50% and the situation is very good with stability across the valley,” he said.

Referring to the recent spurt in attacks in Srinagar and elsewhere in the valley, the GOC said such acts are criminal in nature. “In the rare incidents surfacing these days, some criminal-minded people are killing unarmed security personnel or civilians... These acts cannot even be termed terror incidents, but these are criminal, done by criminals who do not respect any religion,” he said.

Innocent people and political activists were killed to disrupt the peace and development in Kashmir by the enemies of the people as attempts are being made by militants to create an atmosphere of fear, Lt Gen Pandey said.

“Some of these criminal elements are controlled from across (the border) and some by enemies within. The enemies are so frustrated by peace, stability and development that they are killing shopkeepers, politicians and unarmed policemen,” he added.

Lt Gen Pandey, however, said the way security agencies are working on these incidents, “hopefully, they will be stopped”.

He said the role of the Army is diminishing in Kashmir with the active support of the people of the valley and the civil administration.

“About 20-25 years ago, possibly when there was a challenge here, the Army was required. But today, especially in the last 2-3 years, I have seen an exceptional reach out of the civil administration in which deputy commissioners, police and everybody is functioning as they should and the role of the Army has started diminishing,” Lt Gen. Pandey said.

He said the Army was always in a "supporting role and slowly, our role has started diminishing".

"The work is in progress, development is in place and a lot of security issues have been sorted out," the Army officer added.

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