200 militants active in Kashmir, 1/3 are foreigners: CRPF
Around 200 militants are active in Kashmir, out of which one-third are foreigners, but the forces were taking "due care" of the incidents of violence, CRPF said today, while maintaining that there was significant improvement in the situation.
Srinagar: Around 200 militants are active in Kashmir, out of which one-third are foreigners, but the forces were taking "due care" of the incidents of violence, CRPF said today, while maintaining that there was significant improvement in the situation.
"There are different estimates (about the number of militants in the Valley), but there is a mix of foreign and local militants and the number is not very large at this point of time. Maybe around 200, out of which one-third could be foreign militants," CRPF Special DG, S K Bhagat told reporters here.
Speaking to media at the sidelines of a passing-out parade of CRPF here, Bhagat said there was an upsurge of militants crossing over, especially before the onset of winters.
"This has been there over the years. But all said and done, one can still say that the incidents that have been taking place..Have been taken care of and the security forces have been able to neutralize a lot of militants.
"Recently, there was firing on a CRPF convoy in which as many as six personnel were injured. The very next day, with the help of the Special Operation Group (SOG), the CRPF was able to neutralize two militants," he said.
The official noted that 40 militants were neutralised in the Valley this year with the help of CRPF.
"Not only that, especially in the context of maintaining law and order, in as many as 130 incidents, almost 200 CRPF personnel have been injured and some of them grievously. But despite all these provocations, the forces have not gone berserk by resorting to indiscriminate firing. That gives us the entire picture," he said.
Bhagat emphasized that "over a period of time, the militancy has come down drastically and there has been a progressive improvement in the situation in the Valley."
He said despite the challenges that the CRPF faces in the Valley, the forces have been acting with a "lot of restraint".
"We have been able to see to it that the people whom we work with? the local administration in whose aid we are..We always consider the person on the other side as our friend, as our ally and as a citizen of this great country," the official remarked.