Over 140 Doda Youth Crossed Over To PoK Since 1990

Over 140 Doda Youth Crossed Over To PoK Since 1990

14 February 2014
The Tribune (Chandigarh)


Doda: Over 140 youth from Doda district crossed over to Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) for arms training since the onset of militancy in the state, the police said here today. “As many as 142 youth from Doda district mentioned in the missing list of the police crossed over to Pakistan or PoK for arms training since 1990,” Superintendent of Police (SP), Doda, Mohammad Sharif Chouhan told reporters here today. He added that so far the police have received 19 applications from the district for the return of youth from across the fence under the state’s rehabilitation policy. “We have received 19 applications from Doda district under the Jammu and Kashmir Government’s rehabilitation policy. Applications have been moved by the relatives and family members on behalf of the youth who are willing to return to the mainstream,” Chouhan said. The officer, meanwhile, said only three militants from Doda have surrendered under the policy since its inception in 2010. “Since the rehabilitation policy for militants was framed by the government in 2010, only three militants from Doda have came to surrender and that too using illegal route via Nepal,” he said. On February 11, Doda resident and Hizbul Mujahideen militant Arshad Hussain Rangrez returned from PoK after spending 24 years there. Arshad returned along with his Pakistani wife Sumaira (36), daughters Mehrookh (10) and Adeeba (6) and a four-year-old son Mohammed Ahmed. During interrogation Arshad revealed that he had crossed over to PoK for arms training in early 1990’s. “I undertook a week-long training at the Jala camp before escaping from there. I then started living with my uncle Prof Abdul Razak in the PoK and used to work there as a shopkeeper,” Arshad reportedly told his interrogators. Similarly, Mohammad Iqbal Shinali along with PoK-based wife and three children had illegally crossed over to India via Nepal and surrendered before the Doda police in 2011. Majid Nai also returned using the same route last year, the reports said. Under the state’s rehabilitation policy only those youth who return to the country via prescribed routes of the Poonch-Rawalakote, the Uri-Muzaffarabad, Wagah in Punjab and the Indira Gandhi International Airport in New Delhi are entitled to cash benefits and other welfare schemes.