Hizbul Workers Arrested, Mobile Services Restored In Kashmir

4 June 2015
Times of India
M Saleem Pandit

Srinagar: Mobile and internet services were restored throughout the Kashmir valley on Thursday following Jammu & Kashmir police arresting as well as detaining over a hundred suspected Hizbul Mujahideen supporters who'd gone about distributing pamphlets and threatening mobile tower operators to close down services. A senior police officer said proper security arrangements have been made for mobile towers and 'special teams' constituted for the safety of mobile masts. 'Policemen would be deployed at sensitive places. Patrolling would be carried out. There'll be round the clock security and in coming one or two days, the services would be fully restored,' said DIG, North Kashmir, Garib Dass. The police arrested four Hizbul Mujahideen men on Wednesday after attacks on mobile towers in which two people were killed. A senior police officer said the four were involved in the attacks in North Kashmir. Sources added all four are 'over ground Hizb workers'; their chief was arrested from Badambagh in Sopore where many mobile towers are located. Confirming the arrests, a police officer said further investigations are on and more arrests are expected. Already hundreds of sympathizers in north Kashmir have been detained to check attacks on mobile towers, he said. 'We've restored 90% telecom network in north Kashmir including in Kupwara, Handwara, Sopore, Baramulla, Pattan and Bandipora,' DIG Garib Dass told TOI, adding, 'Now, there are places where we have technical shortages and we are working to restore that as well.' 'Wherever there is threat, police are ready to face it, but we won't allow any harm to civilians. If the need arises, we will shift towers as well. We can relocate them. Our special teams have been patrolling. Special Operations Group and CRPF would be deployed in critical areas and spots,' Das said. Meanwhile, Union minister Jitender Singh said, 'The Central government had conveyed concerns to the J&K government. We are hopeful that the Mufti (CM) will take strong action against the culprits,' he added.