In what may be perceived as a major accomplishment for India, there has been a drastic decline in terrorist infiltrations from Pakistan across the LoC this year. There have been no encounters between security forces and terrorists at the LoC this year, which shows how Pakistan has probably, just maybe, learnt its lesson. The army and Jammu and Kashmir Police have distinct mechanisms for identifying and handling terrorists. The army keeps a track of attempted infiltrations by the number of encounters with terrorists at the LoC. The police, on the other hand, rely on ground intelligence in order to identify new individuals in a given area which are likely to be terrorists. There has been only one encounter near the LoC this year with a JeM terrorist at Boniyar, Uri. However, it was concluded that this terrorist had not infiltrated, but was rather ex-filtrating into Pakistan.
Jammu and Kashmir Governor, Satya Pal Malik had gone a step further to declare that there have been zero instances of terrorists trying to cross the line this year. However, security forces consider this a premature observation. They, however, share the same sentiment- that infiltration has drastically dropped.
Pakistani terrorists usually peak their infiltration bids into India during June-July every year. This is the time most suited for infiltrations as the winter snow melts in the valley and the monsoon is yet to arrive. According to officials, infiltration in Jammu and Kashmir usually begins every year during May. However, no such activity has been reported so far. “By this time last year, around 15 militants had been killed while trying to infiltrate into Kashmir. But as of now, there has been no report of an encounter between militants and security forces on the border,” a senior police officer told The Indian Express.
During the first six months of 2018, there were 133 reported infiltration attempts by terrorists. The Balakot airstrikes by India in February and the dramatic turn of events between the two countries ever since seems to have tightened the noose around Pakistan. Pakistan is now diplomatically considered a pariah by almost all countries. Moreover, rising pressure on the establishment in Pakistan to curb it’s terror activities seems to have finally gotten into the minds of those running the country. FATF too has warned Pakistan with blacklisting if it fails to act on the action-plan given to it to stop terror financing.
Not only have infiltrations minimized, but also there has been a reduction in the number of terror attacks after the Pulwama terror attack and India’s massive offensive against Pakistan, which was then followed by massive crackdown within the valley against separatists and terror financers. The figures reveal that 120 militants and three of their associates were killed in the first six months of this year. Ninety-four of them were killed after forces intensified anti-militancy operations following the Pulwama attack in which 40 paramilitary personnel were killed. Meanwhile, separatists like Aasiya Andrabi and Yasin Malik have been arrested by the NIA.
Moreover, the calls for hartals and bandhs in Jammu and Kashmir too have reduced post-Pulwama. So far, there have been only six calls for hartals after the Balakot airstrikes. Just a few days ago, it was observed that Amit Shah visited Kashmir as Home Minister and there was no bandh called to protest this visit. Not only has Pakistan succumbed to Indian and international pressure, but it also seems that even separatists back home have accepted that Kashmir will not be separated from India and that they are fighting for a false cause. Within days of Amit Shah taking over as Home Minister, there were news reports which claimed that the Hurriyat was ready for talks with the Indian government.
This should serve as a lesson for the future generations of this country. With a neighbor like Pakistan, the pussyfooting and sweet talk will never yield results. They need to be dealt with an iron fist. The Aman Ki Asha tamasha bandwagon must be abandoned forever and for good.