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Militancy free districts: Baramulla, Srinagar, what next? 

Kashmir Indepth Exclusive

Srinagar, Jan 25: The change in strategy by the forces that entails focussed approach on the flow of human intelligence is resulting in the back to back blows to Kashmir’s new age militancy with police declared Baramulla district of north Kashmir as “first militancy free district.”

The assertions made by the director general of police Dilbagh Singh that Baramulla was the militancy free district comes at a time when forces have killed 250 militants last year and almost 16 militants in the first 25 days of the January month of New Year. Nine militants were killed all alone in just 48 hours that include three from Al-Badr who were slain in Hapatnar Budgam, three from Hizbul Mujahideen at Heff-Shirmal and the last three at Binner, Baramulla who were part of Lashkar-e-Toiba.
A police officer said that killing of three local militants in Baramulla’s Binner village, who were affiliated with the Lashkar-e-Toiba that include—Shoaib Farooq Akhoon, Mohsin Mushtaq Bhat, and Shaheed Nasir Ahmed Darzi was a big success for the forces as they were all locals from the Baramulla district.
“With this Baramulla has become first district of Kashmir with no surviving militant as on date. JK police extends its thanks to local population for all their support in providing a better security environment in the district,” said DGP Singh in a statement issued here. “Kashmir needs peace so that its people could have its dividends for a better tomorrow.”
A top police officer told Kashmir In-depth Baramulla is not the only district where there is no local surviving militant. “Srinagar too is in the list of militant free district. As on date, there is no surviving militant in Srinagar. Efforts are on to root out militancy from Kashmir. For that many steps were taken by the police and the other security agencies and results are visible,” he said, wishing not to be named.
Asked whether there was a deadline for eradicating militancy like there was a buzz that “police was working on a plan to ensure zero militancy in Kashmir, a head of the upcoming polls,” the officer said: “Zero militancy was never possible as far as the militancy in Kashmir is concerned. We may be able to eliminate all local militants but unless Pakistan stops infiltration, militancy will remain a matter of concern for the police and other agencies.”
However, police officer admitted that district-wise mechanism was being followed to make districts militancy free. “As declared by the DGP vis-a-vis Baramulla, tomorrow it can be Bandipora or Kupwara… the process will go on,” he said. “The ultimate aim is to create an atmosphere of peace. Once peace becomes a permanent feature, Kashmir would need a political handling where there would be no role of police.”


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