February 2017 News

Double Cross By Informers Led Soldiers Into Jammu And Kashmir Trap

26 February 2017
India Today
Ajit Kumar Dubey and Shashank Shekhar

New Delhi: Informers have become a new headache for the Army units operating in Jammu and Kashmir against terrorists. According to sources, twice in the past fortnight, army's local informers in the Valley double-crossed and provided red herring to the units involved in operations, leading the jawans into militants' trap. According to Army sources in the Valley, intelligence inputs provided by local informers in both Hajin and Shopian operations were proven wrong, leading to the death of six personnel whereas only one terrorist could be eliminated. INCIDENTS IN SHOPIAN, HAJIN: In a recent case in South Kashmir's Shopian district, three armymen were martyred and one critically injured in an ambush on 44 Rashtriya Rifles when an Army patrol party was returning from a search operation in Kungoo village based on intelligence inputs. The incident has pressed the alarm bell for security establishment as it is 'unusual phenomenon' that in ten days, two major intelligence inputs have gone wrong, sources said. On February 14, at least three soldiers were killed and 15 security personnel were injured during an encounter with terrorists at Hajin in Bandipora district based on wrong intelligence inputs. A militant was also killed during the encounter, which began after security personnel received intelligence inputs about the presence of gunmen in a residential part of the district. According to the source, in the Shopian attack, the army company was given a tip-off about a hideout of some militants but after hours of search, they couldn't find anyone and were attacked on their way back. 'It was apparently a trap as the armymen were attacked with great effectiveness on their way back from the patrol. Armymen were caught unaware as militants came prepared and fired indiscriminately,' the source said. The Hizbul Mujahideen has claimed responsibility for the ambush and the group has also released a video, which shows a group of armed men celebrating the success of the attack. The fallen soldiers have been identified as Lance Naik Ghulam Mohiuddin from Anantnag, Sreejith MJ from Kerala and Sepoy Vikas Singh Gurjar from Rajasthan. A civilian was killed by a stray bullet. The attack also left two army officers, Lieutenant Colonel Mukesh Jha and Major Amardeep Singh, injured while they were travelling together in a light vehicle. Senior officials claimed post protest after gunning down Burhan Wani, the army gave a stress on strengthening its intelligence network that also got many positive results. 15-20 SUCCESSFUL OPERATIONS AGAINST MILITANTS IN LAST TWO MONTHS: In the past couple of months, the army carried out 15-20 successful operation killing over two dozen militants. They also cracked down their network and seizure arms in heavy quantity. According to the source, now militants have started targeting informers and planting misleading information to the army. Official said the police and the army had launched a joint search operation following a tip-off about the presence of terrorists in a residential house in Hajin. But according to senior defence ministry sources, forces zeroed down a building but the attack came from sideways by the hiding terrorists. Sources said army had specific input about a building in which militants were hiding but as soon the building was covered, the firing started from the opposite directions leaving them trapped. After resorting to heavy firing, one terrorist was killed in the encounter.