SRINAGAR: Security agencies have not halted operations against militants in Jammu and Kashmir during the Muslim holy month of Ramzan, and are conducting pre-dawn intelligence-based operations.
“There has been no let up in the operations. Whenever we receive intelligence about militant presence, we launch operations instantly in the specific area,” a top security official said.
The security forces, he said, were maintaining constant pressure on the militants.
Eight militants have been killed in five operations by security forces in the 11 days of Ramzan so far. A civilian and two Army men were also killed in gunfights.
A senior police official said all the five operations were intelligence-based.
The official said the intelligence apparatus of the security agencies operating in the state, especially the Valley, had been strengthened after the 2016 unrest.
“Now we have assets on the ground who give us exact and accurate information about militant presence, and accordingly operations are launched in a specific area without disturbing the whole population of that area,” he said.
According to the official, pre-dawn operations are carried out in the Valley to avoid clashes with locals near encounter sites.
“These operations are planned and conducted swiftly. By the time people know what is happening, the encounter is over,” he said, adding, “We try to finish the operations before the morning”.
Of the four operations in which there were militant casualties, three were pre-dawn operations.
“All the operations were clean and there was no disturbance in the operations from the locals,” he said.
A security official said there had been many civilian casualties in firing by security forces on protestors near encounter sites in the Valley in the past.
“To avoid civilian casualties, we revised the SOPs and fine-tuned our strategies during anti-militancy operations,” he said.