India is concerned that the Pakistan army is attempting a large infiltration after having struggled to move troops into position so far this year.
Army sources told Mail Today that close to 450 trained militants are ready to move across the Line of Control (LoC) to revive their activities and launch attacks against the Indian forces in the Kashmir valley.
Most of these jihadis, Indian Army sources say, have been trained in new camps under the supervision of the Alpha 3 company of the Pakistan army, which is headed by a senior officer of the force.
As part of the new strategy, the terrorists have been trained in assembling improvised explosive devices (IEDs).
The renewed effort comes after a year-long setback for terrorist groups in the region with security forces believing to have eliminated around 130 so far this year.
Indian forces and agencies have in recent months launched a multi-pronged crackdown on jihadis in the Valley, crippling the terror infrastructure and choking the flow of funds.
Officials feel that the terrorists will attempt to cross over into India from the North Kashmir side through areas such as Gurez. Although the terrain is quite treacherous it is believed to prompt intruders to try their luck as it is difficult to patrol.
This year, a majority of terrorists were eliminated by the security forces – mainly the Army – at the Line of Control (LoC) itself when they had just stepped in or were trying to enter Indian territory because of the increased presence of troops to plug the gaps.
The Army has racked up the number of battalions in Kashmir by adding more units from outside at the LoC and also redeploying troops in the hinterland as part of a three-tier counter-infiltration grid.
‘Increased troop presence helped the units spring a surprise on the terrorists attempting to enter Kashmir as they were caught in ambushes on routes their guides had been taking for a long time,’ the sources said.
Hizbul & Lashkar They added that apart from the training to handle basic weapons such as AK-47 assault rifles, the Pakistan army is now coaching them on how to carry out direct, sensational, attacks on camps of Army and CRPF in the Valley.
Most of the terrorists waiting to infiltrate are from the Hizbul Mujahideen, followed by the Lashkar-e-Taiba, and their movements have been noticed frequently at the new launch pads created by the Pakistan army after the 2016 surgical strikes by India.
The sources said about 200- 250 terrorists are active in the Valley, spread between North and South Kashmir areas.
‘In South Kashmir, it is the local terrorists of the Hizbul who are mostly active while foreign terrorists are mostly active in the northern part of the valley,’ he said.
Sources said the terrorist organisations wield more influence than the Pakistan army in some parts of PoK because of accretion in patronage by successive governments and army chiefs.
They added that the jihadis are paid about Rs 18,000 to Rs 19,000 (£229) a month.
Security officials have attributed the availability of ‘low-cost terrorists’ to lack of job opportunities on the other side of the LoC and the growing radicalisation among youth on both sides of Kashmir.
The sources said Army troops across the Kashmir valley and LoC have already been maintaining high operational tempo against terrorists and would continue to do so to tackle the renewed efforts by the Pakistani forces to ramp up terror activities in the state.
This year, because of sweeping operations by forces, top terrorists such as Sabzar Bhatt, Bashir Lashkari and Abu Dujana have been eliminated in encounters spread across cities and remote areas that could have been used by the jihadis to evade security personnel.
By: Daily Mail UK
Source Link: CLICK HERE