Govt reports decline in J&K terror attacks
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With proposed amendments in the Armed Forces Special Powers Act under consideration, the Centre has said that there has been a steep decline in the incidents of violence in Jammu and Kashmir.
There were only 13 incidents of terror attacks reported till October as compared to 26 last year. Security forces gunned down 48 militants as compared to 78 in 2011. The figures compiled by the Union Home Ministry also show a decline in number of civilian casualties.
The J&K government wants to withdraw the AFSPA, which gives sweeping powers to the armed forces, in many areas of the Valley. However, the move has been vehemently opposed by the Defence Ministry. This year, there were only four casualties of security personnel as compared to 12 last year. In 2010, there were 300 terrorism-related fatalities. Officials said that there has been decline in street demonstrations and violence as witnessed in the summer of 2010 as well. However, the Home Ministry has learnt that there has been increase in attempts of infiltration. "Our security forces were able to neutralise infiltration attempts," said a Home Ministry official.
Many districts in J&K have reported militancy in single digits. Some of the troubled districts are Baramulla, Kupwara and Pulwama. Sopore in Baramulla district has emerged as the nerve centre of militant activities and protests. Recently, a sarpanch was gunned down by unidentified militants in Baramulla district.
Officials said that "heightened security" and "presence of a large number of forces" in the Valley were the primary reasons for the decline in militant activities.
However, security agencies acknowledged the presence of LeT and Hizbul Mujahideen in certain pockets.