Number of militants in J-K negligible: Def Min Rajnath Singh

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Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh Thursday said that militants used to come in large numbers but as of now their number has come down to a large extent and is negligible now. He said credit for the diminishing number of militants goes to security polices including police force.

Singh arrived on a two-day visit to Jammu and Kashmir. Addressing troops in the border town of Uri, Singh, as per a local news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO), said that neighboring country continues its efforts to foment trouble in Kashmir but “soldiers have always thwarted such designs.”

“Earlier, major activities related to militancy were being witnessed in Jammu and Kashmir but there is a significant decline in such acts,” he said.

The Defence Minister said that there is no need to tell what kind of nefarious acts “our neighboring country is indulging in.” “Every day incidents happen because of them. Militants used to come in large numbers earlier but now it has remained negligible too and its credit goes directly to the Army, BSF, CRPF and Jammu and Kashmir police and whom I myself congratulate,” he said.

Targeting Pakistan, he has said that by cutting fencing it always tries to keep “our country in turmoil.”

“We have upgraded our fencing capabilities that cutting it would be very difficult now,” he said. Praising army for protecting the borders, Singh said: “I want to tell soldiers that the whole country trusts you because you are always ready to face any enemy.”

The defence minister also reviewed security at army’s Srinagar-based 15 Corps headquarters and also visited forward areas in Kashmir.

Singh visited the forward areas of J-K and took stock of the security situation along the border. “He undertook a first-hand assessment of the situation in the formations looking after Line of Control (LoC) and forward areas in north Kashmir. He was accompanied by Chief of the Army Staff General Manoj Pande; General Officer Commanding-in-Chief (GoC-in-C), Northern Command Lt Gen Upendra Dwivedi; GoC, 15 Corps Lt Gen AS Aujla and GoC, 19 Infantry Division Maj Gen Ajay Chandpuria,” he said.

He said that that Singh was briefed on the existing ceasefire agreement on the LoC, development works on field fortifications, counter infiltration grid, operational preparedness and army-citizen connect in border areas. “Upon his arrival at 15 Corps HQs, Singh was briefed by the GOC 15 Corps on the overall security situation prevalent on Line of Control and the hinterland. He was also briefed on the measures instituted for the safety and security of Amarnath Yatra,” he said.

Singh, the defence spokesman said, interacted with the personnel of the Armed Forces, Border Security Force (BSF), Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) and J-K Police.

The Raksha Mantri highlighted that “it was the dawn of a new era of development, peace and prosperity in Kashmir” and applauded 15 Corps for their “high level of morale and contribution to peace building in J-K”—(KNO)

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