SRINAGAR: A few metres away from where a Pakistani flag is flying at Pantha Chowk on the Srinagar-Jammu National Highway is a police station. But no policeman could be seen. The road connects the rest of Kashmir with South Kashmir, where violence in four Sunni Muslim-dominated districts—Shopian, Anantnag, Kulgam and Pulwama—is escalating with the active support of Pakistan-sponsored radicals and mullahs.
The Hizb-ul-Mujahideen and Lashkar-e-Taiba reign here. The Valley is divided into 10 districts—Anantnag, Baramulla, Budgam, Bandipore, Ganderbal, Kupwara, Kulgam, Pulwama, Shopian and Srinagar. There are 22 districts in J&K. Most of the 58 deaths that occurred are confined to the four districts. Intel says the 89 active local terrorists are from these districts, where ISI has activated sleeper cells with Hafiz Saeed’s support. However, an uneasy calm prevails in the state for which Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced fast-tracking the `80,000 crore development package on August 11. Pak-inspired masked radicals move around on motorcycles waving green flags in South Kashmir, trying to spread the tides of hate. But, perhaps tired of the curfew, they are not getting the response they expect in the other six districts.
Srinagar: Terrorists are addressing protesters in south Kashmir, asking them to follow the “shutdown and protest” programme of separatist leaders and warned those defying the diktat of severe consequences. Their strategy is to stage attacks when protests are on to raise passions. A policeman, who had escaped militant attacks twice was third time unlucky when he was shot by militants in Kulgam last week. According to intelligence inputs, over 40 Kashmiri radicals have joined the militancy till July this year. It is not compulsory for the new entrants of militants to go to Pakistan for arms training. They can get it in the forests of South Kashmir, like Burhan Wani did. Infiltration from Pakistan continues with the active help of people in the region. A video showing 12 heavily-armed Hizbul Mujahideen militants entering Kashmir, and raising pro-Burhan slogans has gone viral.
Police say Pakistani agents in Shopian, Anantnag, Kulgam and Pulwama are urging people to tune into Pakistan Radio, which is regaining popularity in the Valley. They are also promoting Pakistani newspapers. Pro-Pakistan graffiti pockmarks the walls, shutters of shops and other visible places. Pro-Islamist slogans reverberate from mosques in south Kashmir.
The fervor is so high that some areas have even been renamed “Pakistan Bagh”.
Clerics are playing their part in fuelling the pro-Pak fire. In regular sermons in mosques, they praise Pakistan, describing it as the savior of Kashmiris.
“They tell people that Pakistan is highlighting the Kashmir issue internationally and is solidly backing them. The clerics pray for Pakistan’s prosperity and India’s destruction,” said a local.