‘Af-Pak turbulence to create ripples in JK’
AFSPA Revocation Detrimental: Lt Gen Hasnain
PRESS TRUST OF INDIA
Pattan, Mar 17: Day after Pentagon said that Indo-Pak peace was vital to stabilisation of situation in Afghanistan, Army’s Srinagar-based commander Thursday echoed similar concerns saying the turbulence in Afghanistan and Pakistan will have an impact on the situation in Jammu and Kashmir.
“India, Kashmir and Pakistan are all at the peripheries of the problem area of Afghanistan. So if peace does not exist in Afghanistan and there is turbulence in Pakistan, obviously there will be turbulence around us,” General Officer Commanding of the Srinagar-based 15 Corps, Lt General S A Hasnain told reporters here, 30 kms from capital Srinagar.
Lt Gen Hasnain was replying to a question about the impact on Kashmir after the US forces withdraw from Afghanistan. “The problem is always that of turbulence. An area that is turbulent will always send waves of turbulence into the other areas,” the GOC said.
He said the Army has reports that militants across the Line of Control (LoC) will attempt to infiltrate into the state in the next few days. “Around 700 militants were waiting at various launch-pads to infiltrate into the state,” he said.
“Snow is melting fast and we have received reports that there is concentration (of militants) at the training camps and launching pads (on the other side) again,” Lt Gen Hasnain said.
He, however, said the counter-infiltration grid of the Army is strong and any attempt by the militants to cross into the region will be foiled.
“I want to assure you that counter-infiltration grid is strong and we have sophisticated surveillance devices. I am hopeful that there will be no infiltration,” he said.
“Our assessment is that there were about 600-700 militants at all the launch-pads (on the other side of LoC) across the Kashmir, they even attempted to infiltrate but they were not successful,” he added.
Lt Gen Hasnain said “state of militancy” is not based on the number of militants present in an area.
“Until they have the capacity to infiltrate and there is the intent, militancy is present here,” he said.
ON AFSPA REVOCATION
Lt Gen Hasnain said revoking Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) and Disturbed Areas Act (DAA) in Jammu and Kashmir would mean “compromising” Army’s operational capabilities.
“We feel that by revoking special legal provisions, which are in place here, definitely our operational capabilities will be compromised,” he said and added that the Army’s “line of thinking” about the revocation of AFSPA has already been conveyed many times to the government.
“Army’s line of thinking has already been conveyed many times by the Chief of the Army Staff, Commander of the Northern Command and even I have conveyed it a couple of times. We are going through a process of interaction with the state government and there are two committees which have been set-up for this purpose,” he said.
ON REHABILITATION POLICY
GOC said the state government’s rehabilitation policy for militants who want to return from Pakistan administered Kashmir was not a major security risk “as long as they are certified not to be dangerous.”
“I do not think it is a major security risk as long as the procedures required to ensure that these people have been certified not to be dangerous are followed,” Lt Gen Hasnian said.
He said the state government had recently asked for the Army’s opinion about “certain individuals” who want to come back from PaK under the rehabilitation policy.
“We have given them to our agencies who are certifying, who are checking up on this,” Hasnian said.
He said the civil administration, Government of India and the Army are all on the same page as far as the rehabilitation policy is concerned.
“I am sure that this joint procedure that has just started will refine itself over the period of time. I am sure that this initiative will definitely be a success,” he said.
Lastupdate on : Thu, 17 Mar 2011 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Thu, 17 Mar 2011 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Fri, 18 Mar 2011 00:00:00 IST
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