Jammu and Kashmir government on Tuesday, while responding to a query, said nearly 150 militants are active in the state including 54 foreigners and over 4,500 youths have crossed over to Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) for arms training in last 30 years. Police said the involvement of locals in militancy has spiked but they are trying hard to prevent these activities.
The data was provided by the state home department in the state assembly in the presence of chief minister Mehbooba Mufti, in reply to a question raised by the former chief minister and leader of Opposition, National Conference’s Omar Abdullah.
The home department stated that “as many as 145 militants, including 54 foreigners mostly from Pakistan are active in Jammu and Kashmir, while at least 4,587 Kashmiri youths have crossed over to PoK.”
Inspector General of Police, Syed Javaid Mujtaba Gillani said around 150-170 militants including local and foreigner, were active in the state. “The recruitment of local boys had increased last year and our focus is to contain and prevent them from joining militancy,” Gillani said.
Meanwhile, Gillani said the militancy leader in Kashmir, Hizbul Mujahideen’s Burhan Wani, who was recently seen in a video urging cops to train their guns towards India, was on his own as most of his group members have been killed. Since 2010, a total of seven state police personnel have joined militant ranks with their service weapons.
The home department added that the state has sanctioned a policy to rehabilitate the militants, who are willing to return to Jammu and Kashmir.
“The state government has sanctioned a policy and procedure for the rehabilitation of misguided youth who have crossed to PoK, Pakistan but have given up insurgent activities due to change of heart and are willing to return the state,” the chief minister said.