Jammu, Dec 31: J&K Director General of Police (DGP) Dilbag Singh on Friday stated that those making “irresponsible utterances” against Hyderpora encounter or questioning the probe, in case had evidence to prove it otherwise, could submit it to the magistrate or investigative team.
However, if the people still did not mend ways and continued to violate law (by making irresponsible utterances) without evidence, law would take its own course, he cautioned.
While addressing his annual presser here, DGP also averred that 182 militants, affiliated to different militant groups, were killed in 100 anti-militancy operations in the year 2021, thus offering much sought after reprieve to people in the areas of J&K affected by militancy. He stated among the killed militants, 20 were foreigners.
“134 locals joined terror ranks in the Union Territory this year but 72 of them have been neutralised and 22 have been arrested. As a part of crack-down on the support system of the terrorism, 570 Over-Ground Workers and others too have been killed or arrested,” he added.
Responding to questions related to the statements (of politicians) casting aspersions on the police investigation in Hyderpora encounter, the DGP maintained, “We definitely feel hurt with the kind of utterances they make. They are very irresponsible. To say the least, this was very irresponsible on the part of certain people, who were not part of the investigation. They do not know anything about the investigation and the ground situation. They are the people who actually themselves have seen this kind of scenario for years and years and they do know the reality, actually on the ground.”
“But I think, counting votes on the dead bodies may be perhaps (their) mission. But I don’t think, in the long run, they will succeed in this mission. We’ve already made it clear that anybody having any evidence (should submit it)...There were two forums available to them. One was the magisterial inquiry; anyone having any evidence should have gone to the Magistrate, who was conducting the enquiry. And if still they’ve something, we’ve an investigation team, which is working there. Why don’t they go and present the evidence before them. We’ve made it crystal clear that the operation was neat and clean; the police and other forces had done professional work. We have also made it clear that those utterances are, somehow, violative of law and may be at some stage if the people do not mend their ways, the law will take its own course,” he cautioned.
In response to a query about the action taken against those supporting militancy, the DGP said, “If you’ve a look at the cases which we’ve investigated, some of them have already been accounted for (their acts) and we will be looking for more. We are looking for more and more evidences against the people, who are in a way very cleverly trying to support militancy. They are into soft separatism. I think we've taken action against some of them and we are looking for evidence against others to fix their accountability and take action against them.”
When asked about the statements of PDP president and few other political leaders on this account, his brief answer was, “No one is above the law.”
Responding to another related question, the DGP maintained this was not for the first time that the questions were raised vis-a-vis encounters or (anti-militancy) operations conducted by the police. “This happened in the past also. Probably this will happen in the future also. Whenever questions are raised, answers are given as per an available mechanism based on the factual position on ground; on a case to case basis. There can be no set formula. Clarifications are given as per situation on the ground in any particular case,” he added.
“As far as number vis-a-vis terrorism is concerned, it is fed by local recruitment and infiltration. On both the indices, a decline has been registered. Attempts are being made to fully eliminate terrorism from the UT but it is not possible to fix any deadline for that,” DGP averred when asked about a deadline to eliminate militancy in J&K.
Earlier, while giving a detailed account of achievements of JKP in the year 2021, Singh said, “This is heartening to note that last evening, Jammu and Kashmir Police completed its target of 100 successful operations aimed at eliminating terrorism in the Union Territory of J&K. Out of those terrorists eliminated, around 44 were top terrorists including Zilla division or UT level overall operational head commanders. These terrorists included 26 from Lashkar; 10 from Jaish; 7 from Hizbul and one from Al-Badr. Eighty terrorists were caught alive. After many years, a very low number of terrorists are active this time. The figure has come down after a long period.”
“Action is being taken against Over Ground Workers of all hues; local or global; male or female; white-collared or illiterate; young or old,” he stated. DGP pointed out that 2021 was a very successful year in terms of achievements of JKP in case of law and order situation. “There were almost negligible incidents of stone pelting, agitation, Bandh call, which have almost been forgotten. Even if few localised incidents of stone-pelting occurred, they were very tactfully and efficiently handled by the police,” he remarked.
Responding to questions pertaining to SPOs, he stated, “This is a temporary arrangement and within the existing system, whatever facilities they could be provided, were being given to them. They, too, like others, were getting 10 percent Risk Allowance.” He stated that the Cyber Centre of Excellence was being set up and it would soon be in place.
Giving an account of recent operations, he informed that a total of nine Jaish-e-Mohammad militants involved in the attack on a police bus in Pantha Chowk were killed in the last 24 hours. Averring that there was decline in infiltration of militants from across the border. He said a total of 497 people were booked under the UAPA and other cases this year.
Replying to a question about the threat of militants coming from Afghanistan to revive militancy in Jammu and Kashmir at the behest of Pakistan, he said that JKP was capable of handling any such threat. DGP pointed out that Pakistan was trying to revive militancy in the Jammu region and this was evident from the discovery of underground tunnels and use of drones in the border areas to drop arms and ammunition. “But we’re chasing the terrorists; tracking them and killing them,” he added.
He dismissed the reports about the presence of 10-15 militants in Bhata-Dhurian forests. “This input is wrong that there are 10-15 people present there. On the basis of foot-prints, there were reports about the presence of 5-7 people, out of them some crossed over to Kashmir. Some of them have been eliminated during the encounters in the last two or three weeks. Two of them were supposed to be roaming around in the region. Even one of them has been eliminated recently,” he said.