Published On: Thu, Feb 16th, 2017
India | ByIANS

Worrying trend in Kashmir: Protesters coming to rescue of terrorists

New Delhi: Security forces in the Kashmir Valley are facing a serious challenge in their anti-terror operations with a new trend, which has almost become a phenomenon now, of stone-throwing protesters coming out to rescue terrorists from shootout sites.

Stone-pelting protesters came close to an gunfight site to help terrorists escape

Military officials and security experts admit it is a dangerous trend with Army Chief General Bipin Rawat even warning locals against supporting terrorists.

Earlier, Kashmir police had issued advisories, asking people not to come close to shootout sites between terrorists and security forces. The district administration prohibits gathering of four or more persons around the areas where gun battles are on.

Despite that people came out throwing stones at security forces during at least three gun battles in the valley.

The trend began in south Kashmir last year when dozens of people came shouting slogans and throwing stones at security forces in a village near Pampore town. The trend has now spread to other parts of the valley.

On Sunday morning, stone-pelting protesters came close to an gunfight site to help terrorists escape when security forces were fighting them in south Kashmir’s Kulgam.

Two days later, when forces cordoned off a village in north Kashmir, a mob marched towards the terrorist hideout throwing stones at police and the army.

A similar incident was reported in north Kashmir’s Handwara where people took to streets to help terrorists escape.

Army officials told that these were diversionary tactics by overground workers to help the besieged terrorists get out, giving a nightmare to security forces in their efforts to minimize collateral damage in their nearly three-decade of unending counter-insurgency operations in the valley.

The officials, however, clarified that the army chief’s warning wasn’t directed generally at the people of the Kashmir but definitely against those who were supporting terrorist activities and trying to protect terrorists.

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