February 2001 News

George, Farooq review Kashmir strategy

11 February 2001
The Asian Age

Jammu: Defence minister George Fernandes and chief minister Farooq Abdullah on Sunday reviewed the security situation in Jammu and Kashmir with senior Army, paramilitary and intelligence officers in Srinagar. The meeting assumed significance in view of the stepped-up suicide attacks by militants on security forces and other installations and killing of members of two communities in separate incidents at Srinagar and Rajouri. The high-level review meeting was held within two days of a suicide attack on the police control room in Srinagar in which at least eight policemen were killed. The Lashkar-e-Tayyaba has claimed responsibility for the attack and said it was carried out with the help of the Al-Umar Mujahideen, another pro-Pakistan outfit, whose supremo, Mustaq Ahmad Zargar, was released in exchange for the passengers of the hijacked Indian Airlines plane in Kandahar. The Sundayís meeting was attended by the GOCs of 15 and 16 Corps, Lt. Gen. J.R. Mukherji and Lt. Gen. A.S. Khanna, state chief secretary Ashok Jaitley, the director-general of J&K police, Mr A.K. Suri, IBís additional director S.K. Singh and inspectors-general of BSF, CRPF and ITBP. Meanwhile, the Lashkar-e-Tayyaba has asked the state police personnel to resign from service or else face suicide attacks even as tension prevailed in the violence-hit areas. A statement of the outfit carried by local press in Srinagar and Jammu warned them of serious consequences in case they disregarded the warning. A wing of the state police, special operations group, charged with the counter-insurgency activities, has increasingly come under criticism in recent times for allegedly indulging in human rights violations.


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