Pulwama attack masterminded by JeM, ISI; those who pick up gun will be eliminated: Army

Lt Gen KS Dhillon, 15 Corps Commander, said that the Pulwama attack was carried out by the JeM, which is based in Pakistan, with active support of the ISI and the Pakistan Army.

Published: 19th February 2019 11:56 AM  |   Last Updated: 20th February 2019 12:01 AM   |  A+A-

Indian army soldiers keep vigil during the fourth consecutive day of curfew in Jammu, the winter capital of Jammu and Kashmir state, India, Monday, Feb.18, 2019. | AP

Express News Service

SRINAGAR: The top Army commander on Monday in a strong message to local militants said whosoever has picked up gun would be killed and eliminated unless he surrenders.

He said the commanders are leading anti-militancy operations in the Valley.

"I want to appeal mothers to request their sons, who have joined militancy to return and join mainstream. Otherwise, whoever has picked up gun will be killed and eliminated unless he surrenders," said General Officer Commanding (GoC) of Srinagar-based army's 15 Corps Lt General K J S Dhillon while addressing a joint press conference with IGP Kashmir S P Pani and IG CRPF Zulfiqar Hasan, here today.

He said the youth who have picked up gun should take benefit of government's surrender policy and return to mainstream. -"Otherwise, anyone who has picked up the gun will be killed and eliminated,-" he said.

The GoC disclosed that security commanders are leading anti-militancy operations from front in the Valley.He disclosed that Brigadier Harbir Singh, who was injured in gunfight with militants at Pinglina, Pulwama yesterday, was on leave at home.

"After coming to know about the encounter, he cut short leave voluntary and rejoined. He returned to Kashmir and straight away drove to operational fight and was leading men from the front. Similarly, DIG south Kashmir Amit Kumar, who was also injured in the encounter, was also leading from the front, he said.The GoC said security officers would continue to lead from the front anti-militancy operations.

The army commander also asked people not to go near encounter sites.

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"People should stay away from the encounter site during the encounter and after the encounter for their own safety. During the encounter, something can go wrong and after the encounter the leftover explosives can cause injury or death,-" he said.

On local recruitment, GoC said, "The recruitment has come down. There is a significant dip in the recruitment and statistics reflect it." About 190 militants had joined militants in the Valley last year."There were inimical elements involved in radicalization"of youth.

However, efforts of security forces, government and opinion makers have helped in reducing methods of radicalization in recent past. We will continue to put our efforts towards this in very collective manner," the senior Army officer said.

Lt Gen Dhillon said there has been no infiltration on Line of Control (LoC) because of heavy snow, adverse weather condition and terrain."However, infiltration takes place through International Border (IB) in Jammu and Pathankote sectors," he said.

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