SRINAGAR: Police has prevented over 50 boys from joining militancy in Kashmir by arresting them from different parts of the Valley in last few months and some of them have been handed over to their families after counseling.
A police spokesman said 54 youth were arrested by police from different districts of Kashmir in last few months.
He said four boys from border district of Kupwara, who wanted to join militancy, were arrested on June 27.
Due to timely action of police, 54 youth were prevented from joining militant ranks in Valley. “By their arrest, their families were saved from getting adversely affected by the militancy”.
Kashmir is witnessing surge in militant violence and youth joining militancy.
In response to a question, police spokesman said 28 youth were arrested from Baramulla, Kupwara, Sopore, Handwara and Bandipora areas of north Kashmir.
He said 13 youth were arrested from central Kashmir including Srinagar, Budgam and Ganderbal. “13 youth were also arrested from Pulwama, Anantnag, Shopian, Awantipora and Kulgam in south Kashmir.”
According to police data, over 250 militants are presently active in the Valley. Over 120 militants are active in south Kashmir and about 100 are active in North Kashmir.
In south Kashmir, most of the militants are locals while in north Kashmir, majority of militants are foreigners.
Refusing to reveal identity of the arrested youth, the police spokesman said the arrested youth were counseled after their detention to wean them away from militancy.
“Though arms and ammunitions were recovered from many of the arrested youth, yet some of them were handed over to their families after counseling,” he said adding, “By doing so their families were saved from the adverse affects of the militancy.”
After killing of Kashmir militancy’s poster boy and Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani in an encounter with security forces on July 8 last year, over 100 Kashmiri youth had joined militant ranks in 2016, according to police sources.
Most of the youth joining militant ranks hailed from south Kashmir.
Sources said trend of youth joining militancy continued this year also.
“Many local youth including some teenagers have joined militant ranks in the first half of this year and are associated with Hizbul Mujahideen and Lashkar-e-Toiba,” they said.