Two militants belonging to Harkat-ul-Mujahideen outfit were on Monday arrested in north Kashmir’s Kupwara district, police said. Acting on specific information about the movement of militants in the area, security forces set up a picket at Bakihaker crossing. During checking, two persons who were walking towards Bakihaker started running after seeing the security personnel from a distance, a police spokesman said. Security forces had deployed another team in civvies at a distance which apprehended the suspects, the spokesman said.
After preliminary enquiry, he said, the two were identified as Younis Ahmed Mir (19) alias Sarfaraz, a resident of Sebdan Galwanpora in Budgam district, and Tahir -ul-Islam (21) alias Sajad Afgani, a resident of Muloora Tawheedabad area of Shalteng in Srinagar district.
According to the spokesman, the two claimed that they had recently joined Harkat-ul-Mujahideen militant outfit and were tasked to create disturbance in Handwara by indulging in violent activities.
Two pistols, two hand grenades and other “incriminating” material were seized from their possession, he said.
On sustained interrogation, the spokesman claimed, the militants revealed that most of the militant organisations based in Handwara-Kupwara region are facing problems on account of depleting number of local militants in the field.
“They further revealed that youths of the region are not ready to pick up gun, despite a lot of efforts by the militant commanders based in Kashmir and PoK (Pakistan-occupied Kashmir).
“The militant outfits had succeeded in recruiting some local boys in Kupwara region recently, but they either surrendered before police, or were caught by security forces within a short span of time after joining militancy,” he said.
Because of this pressure on the Valley-based commanders of militant outfits to disturb the peace and tranquillity of the region, they are making efforts to recruit militants in other regions and bring them to Handwara for carrying out militant attacks, the spokesman said.
Police has registered a case in this regard and further investigation is on, he said.