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Current security scenario reflects Kashmiri youth have abandoned street protests: Lt Gen Pandey

Current security scenario reflects Kashmiri youth have abandoned street protests: Lt Gen Pandey

SRINAGAR: General officer Commanding (GoC) of Srinagar-based army’s 15 corps Lieutenant General D P Pandey Monday said that current security scenario reflects that the Kashmiri youth have abandoned street protests.

Talking to reporters on the sidelines of a function in Srinagar, the GoC said that the army and the security forces are fighting against anti-social elements. “We need to ensure that the children get education and become responsible citizens, but there are vicious elements in the society who push the youth towards the wrong path,” the army officer said.

He said that no parent would like to see their children picking up stones. “Let me tell you that the current security scenario reflects that Kashmiri youth have abandoned the street protests and picking up stones,” he said.

Replying to a query about local boys joining militancy, the GoC said that whosoever picks up the gun will either be killed or apprehended. “If anyone wishes to surrender, we will face that,” he said.

About the situation on the LoC, the GoC Pandey said that this year so far there has been no Ceasefire Violation. “Since January this year, there has been zero CFV. While we are totally prepared if anything happens. We are set to respond appropriately. But this year, there has been no instigation from across,” he said.

To a query whether there has been any infiltration this year, the army officer said that there have been some attempts unlike previous years. “This year, there have been only two successful attempts of infiltration. One was tackled and the group was eliminated at Bandipora while there is an operation going on at Uri (Baramulla). We believe there is a bid in Uri sector but that’s yet to be ascertained. It is not clear whether the group has entered into this side or gone back,” he said. “I assure you that we are alert and our troops on ground are alert as well.”

The GoC 15 Corps said that figures available with the police and the army suggest that there are 60 to 70 foreign militants operating in Kashmir. “The strategy being adopted by the foreign militants is that they are lying low and pushing local boys to carry out attacks on security forces. This strategy is helping them,” he said, adding that “whenever local boy gets killed in the encounter, the foreign militants believe that increases the anger of the slain militant’s family against army and security forces.”

GoC was speaking to the media at the felicitation ceremony of first and second batch of students who are undergoing the MBBS course after clearing NEET under Kashmir Super 30 (Medical batches). The project partners are HPCL and National Integrity and Educational Development Organisation(NIEDO). The GoC congratulated the parents whose children have participated in the Kashmir Super 30 program in the past three years. “It’s a matter of great honour for us that the first two batches of this program have been attending various courses across the country. The third batch despite the pandemic have been able to complete this course and I am sure maximum of them will come up at a very high list,” he said—(KNO)