By Zaffar Iqbal
Srinagar, Feb 22 (IANS) The number of militants active in Kashmir has come down and only 200-250 militants are active in the valley now.
This was stated by J&K Director General of Police (DGP) Dilbagh Singh at a press conference in Srinagar on Saturday.
Flanked by IGP Kashmir Vijay Kumar, he said action against terrorists will continue.
He said there have been three successful infiltration bids in Kashmir in the last two months in which three militants have infiltrated.
“One of them, a foreign militant of JeM, was killed in an encounter,” he said.
He said police have started taking action against those misusing the social media to instigate people, and one person from Handwara in Kupwara has been arrested.
To a question about threats to an SSP rank officer on social media, IG Vijay Kumar said the threats were issued from the account of Hafiz Sohail.
He said after investigation it was found that the account was actually in use with Sohail Wali of Pulwama.
“Police have carried out searches in his home and a case is being registered against him as investigations are still on,” he said.
Singh said another person Hamsa Hizbi was involved in similar acts from Saudi Arabia.
He said he was arrested and a case was registered against him at Tangmarg.
“Action will be taken against Sohail also,” he said.
About police high-handedness against journalists, he said such incidents should be seen as aberrations and not a routine.
He said strong note was taken of police manhandling of some journalists in downtown Srinagar last year.
The police regretted such actions and the involved policemen were reprimanded.
“The incident was taken seriously and the people involved were reprimanded,” he said.
Singh added that police questioned journalist Kamran Yousuf of Pulwama for a tweet but let him go after investigations found him innocent.
“We should not hype up things, there can be an odd incident or an aberration but it is not a routine,” he said.
He said in 2020 there have been 12 successful operations by the security forces, 10 in Kashmir and two in Jammu, in which 25 terrorists have been killed.
He said so far nine terrorist operatives have been arrested from Kashmir and four from Jammu. More than 40 Over Ground Workers of militants have also been arrested this year.
Giving details about two LeT militants killed in Anantnag on Saturday, he said one of them was identified as Naveed Ahmad Bhat alias Furqan from Kulgam. He had been active since 2018. There were seven FIRs registered against him.
“He was involved in attacks on security forces, civilians enforcing shutdown after Article 370 was revoked,” the DGP said, adding the other militant was identified as Aqib Yaseen Bhat of Kulgam. He was active since June 2019 and had one FIR registered against him.
He said police arrested Hizbul Mujahideen commander Junaid Farooq Pandit from Pattan who had been tasked to carry out selective killings against security forces. One pistol and 30 rounds were recovered from him.