In a major step towards thwarting Pakistan’s attempts to increase terrorist activities in Jammu and Kashmir, the Indian Army is launching Operation Sarvashakti, where the security forces will be targeting the terrorists operating on both sides of the Pir Panjal mountain ranges in the Union Territory.
In recent times, Pakistani proxy terrorist groups have tried to revive terrorism in the South of Pir Panjal ranges especially in the Rajouri Poonch sector, where around 20 troops have been killed in attacks by terrorists, with the latest being on December 21, when four soldiers were killed in the Dera ki Gali area there.
“Operation Sarvashakti would be to carry out combined counter-terrorist operations from both sides of the Pir Panjal ranges where the formations of the Srinagar-based Chinar Corps along with the Nagrota-headquartered White Knight Corps would be carrying out simultaneous operations,” sources in the security forces told ANI.
“The Jammu and Kashmir Police, CRPF, Special Operations Group, and the intelligence agencies would be working in close coordination to thwart Pakistani designs to revive terrorist activities in the UT, especially in the Rajouri Poonch sector,” they added.
The operations are expected to be on the lines of Operation Sarpvinash, which was launched in 2003 to eliminate terrorists from the same areas in the South of Pir Panjal range.
Army Chief General Manoj Pande recently stated that terrorist activities had almost vanished in the area since 2003, but the western adversary is now trying to revive it there.
He along with the Northern Command had also held detailed discussions with the Corps Commanders on ways to tackle the threat from these terrorists.
The operations are being launched in close monitoring by the Army Headquarters and the Northern Army Command in Udhampur and were planned soon after Home Minister Amit Shah held a security meeting with all stakeholders including the National Security Advisor Ajit Doval, Army, intelligence agencies including both internal and external ones, police officials from both state and central agencies.
Northern Army Commander Lt Gen Upendra Dwivedi has held coordination meetings with the top security forces brass in both the Jammu and the Kashmir regions for coordinated action against terrorists.
The Indian Army has also started the process of inducting more troops in the Rajouri-Poonch sector
The troops’ induction process has also started, along with the strengthening of the intelligence setup in the region.
The security forces are also confident about the local support to thwart terrorism in the areas. Sources said that despite provocation by terrorists to attack an Army vehicle in the Krisna Ghati area, the troops did not fire back as a lot of civilians were present there. The swift action initiated by the Indian Army against own officers and men in the death of civilians post-December 21 encounter has also helped.