The number of youths joining the ranks of militancy in Kashmir has gone down “remarkably” since the nullification of provisions of Article 370 in August last year, officials have said.
According to a report prepared by security agencies, on an average five local youths have joined militancy every month since August 5 last year, as compared to the earlier rate of 14 per month.
The report, comparing militancy-related developments before and after August 5, stated that large gatherings at funerals of militants, which were fertile grounds for recruitment of youths into militancy, have become a thing of the past as now only a handful of close relatives are seen at burial grounds.
“There are instances when militants were buried in the presence of just a dozen of close relatives,” the report said.
Earlier, funerals of terrorists killed by security forces attracted large crowd with the attendance crossing 10,000 at times.
Another trigger for local youths joining the ranks of militancy was the last call made by a trapped terrorist to his family members. Such voice recording would normally find its way to general masses and would act as a catalyst on some of the young brains to pick up the gun.
However, after August 5, 2019 no such calls were reported, partly due to restrictions in communication channels and partly due to the changed scenario, the report said.
It said there has also been a marked decrease in stone-pelting incidents — both during encounters between security forces and militants as well as on other occasions. The use of tear smoke shells, pellet guns was naturally reduced and the number of deaths in law and order went down to negligible limits.
On August 5 last year, a clampdown was enforced in the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir following the abrogation of the state’s special status and its bifurcation into union territories — Ladakh, and Jammu and Kashmir.