No one ready to take over JeM leadership in Kashmir: Army

Addressing a joint press conference of the state police and the Army, Director General of Police in Jammu & Kashmir Dilbag Singh said Wednesday that there had been a decline in the recruitment of local Kashmiri people in terror outfits after the recent crackdown on militancy by the forces.

“Recruitment of local youth continues to be low, it is a healthy sign. 272 terrorists were eliminated in the state during 2018 and a large number were apprehended,” said DG Singh.

“This year, stone-pelting and law and order engagements reduced drastically. We did face some law and order situations during counter-insurgency operations, but those have been fewer than before,” Singh said.

Referring to the poll percentage in the first leg of the poll in south Kashmir, he said the poll percentage was a reflection of the prevailing situation.

“A percentage of around 13 per cent is good considering the situation in south Kashmir. People showed courage and voted despite threats. It is everyone’s right and no one can be forced to vote either,” Singh said.

Jammu and Kashmir police chief Dilbag Singh and inspector general (operations) of Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) Zulfiqar Hassan were also present at the press conference.

“We have targeted Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) leadership, the situation now is that no one is coming forward to take over the leadership of JeM in the valley. Even after Pakistan’s best efforts, we will continue to suppress JeM, specially after Pulwama,” KJS Dhillon, GOC 15 Corps, said.

“Total 69 terrorists have been killed and 12 have been apprehended this year. Post Pulwama 41 terrorists have been killed and out of them 25 belonged to Jaish-e-Mohammed, 13 of them were Pakistanis,” said Dhillon.

“And I would once again request all local youth to surrender. In last few months, few people have approached us for surrender and some surrender have also happened. We assure the people surrendering of complete security and their safety,” stated Dhillon.

Abha Boyal

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