War on terror has claimed lives of 86 security force personnel in 2018 in Jammu and Kashmir— the highest in the last 10 years. Of the 86 security men slain in the line of duty, 44 were policemen, 30 were Army soldiers and rest were from the different paramilitary forces deployed in the terror-struck state. The number of casualties of the security forces in 2018 is the highest since 2007 when 182 security personnel lost their lives.
“Number of operations has increased. Operations are always reviewed and we try to become better with each operation. If the number of operation is high at times it (casualty) happens,” Zulfiquar Hassan, Inspector General of CRPF (Operations), told DNA.
Data compiled by different security agencies reveal that security forces lost 182 men in 2007 and it lost 85 men in 2008. In 2009, 79 security forces men were killed which dropped to 69 in 2010 and 33 in 2011.
Around 15 security personnel were killed in 2012 — the lowest in 10 years (2010 to 2018). In 2013, the year when separatist leader Afzal Guru was hanged, security forces lost 52 soldiers while 47 soldiers were killed the following year. The next three years —2015, 2016 and 2017 — saw 39, 82 and 80 security personnel killed.
Jammu and Kashmir police has suffered the maximum brunt of terrorism in 2018. Police have lost 44 of their men in 2018 which is the highest since 2006 when 78 of its men attained martyrdom.
“We are at the forefront of anti-terror operations in Jammu and Kashmir, and that is why terrorists are targeting us. In addition, they are looking for soft targets like policemen on leave, unarmed policemen going home or buying groceries in markets,” said a police officer.
Official figures reveal that more than 240 terrorists have been killed this year so far, which is the highest since 2010. There were more than 587 incidents of violence in the state this year till December 2 in which 37 civilians were killed.
Last year in the corresponding period, there were 329 incidents of violence in the state in which 200 terrorists were killed while 74 force personnel and 36 civilians also lost their lives.
Figures reveal that 270 terrorists were killed by security forces in 2010. The figure came down to 119 in 2011. Around 84 terror operatives were killed in 2012 followed by 100 in 2013, 110 in 2014, and 113 in 2015. Despite unrest, security forces killed 165 terrorists in 2016. Last year 209 terrorists were neutralised by security forces.
Figures reveal that around 150 youth have been recruited by terror outfits this year as compared to 126 last year. South Kashmir has emerged as breeding ground for Jihadists to recruit gullible youth in 2018.