NEW DELHI: The Centre on Tuesday informed Lok Sabha that 88 youths had joined terror groups in Jammu and Kashmir in 2016, the highest number in the last six years. Besides, the Valley had also witnessed the second highest number of infiltration attempts during the same period since 2010.
In his written reply Minister of State for Home Hansraj Gangaram Ahir provided data showing a sharp increase in the number of youth taking up arms in Jammu and Kashmir.
88 Kashmiri youths joined militancy in 2016 which is highest since 2010. In the year 2010, 54 youths had joined militancy, 23 in 2011, 21 in 2012 and 16 in 2013. The number, however, had shot up to 53 in 2014 and 66 in 2015.
“The state of Jammu and Kashmir has been affected by terrorism sponsored and supported from across the border. The levels of terrorist violence in the hinterland of Jammu and Kashmir are linked to infiltration from across the border,” Ahir told the Lok Sabha.
Ahir later said the situation in Kashmir had “improved to a large extent” in 2017.
The data on infiltration shows that about 121 terrorists had sneaked into the country in 2012, highest in six years, followed by 119 in 2016.
“The counter terrorism efforts saw the best figures in 2010, when 81 per cent of infiltration attempts were thwarted by security forces, with only 95 terrorists entering the country as against 489 attempts,” according to the data.
In 2011, 52 terrorists had crossed over against 247 infiltration attempts, while in 2013, 97 ultras managed to sneak against 277 attempts, it said. In 2014, 222 terrorists tried to enter the country, but only 65 could do it and in 2015, 121 ultras attempted but 33 of them were successful.
“Under the surrender policy notified by the state government, since January 31, 2004 till date, 219 surrendered militants have been benefited under the scheme,” Ahir said.
Ahir said the situation in Kashmir in the current year had now improved to a large extent. “The participation of youths in violence has ceased and normal activities are going on smoothly,” he said.
The data on law and order incidents reported since killing of Burhan Wani last year shows that 820 such events were reported in July last year which declined to 747 in August, 535 in September, 179 in October, 73 in November and 36 in December. The number of such events stood at 5 in January this year, 49 in February and 27 in March this year.
“Barring some violence-prone pockets, the situation is at present normal. Efforts are afoot to bring the situation under control in these vulnerable pockets,” added the minister.