New Delhi: In the aftermath of the Sunjuwan terror attack which claimed the lives of five Army personnel, there is plenty of course correction on its way.
There are nearly 300 terrorists in the lower rungs active in the Kashmir Valley and the latest Intelligence Bureau report states that there is likely to be another offensive soon.
When asked about the high number of terrorists in the Valley, an official explained that these were the foot soldiers. The year 2017 focused on killing the top rung leaders or commander and now the focus will be on the lower rung.
The bigger problem for the Indian Army is that at least 80 out of the 300 terrorists are from Pakistan. They had infiltrated over the past year and have been lying low all these days.
While there was a build up by the Jaish-e-Mohammad in particular for attacks, the Sunjuwan strike was aimed at coinciding with the death anniversaries of Afzal Guru and Maqbool Bhat.
The Indian Army realises that it is time now to go after the lower rung. What has made the Army’s job even more difficult is that the winter is comparatively milder this year. In the absence of heavy snowfall, the infiltration bids are higher and also the terrorists already in the Valley are able to move around freely.
Normally during a harsh winter, the terrorists stay indoors. They do not roam around the Valley for several reasons. Their foot prints on the snow can easily be traced and secondly they run the risk of falling ill. However this year around it has been different. The winter has been a dry one and this has given the terrorists the required advantage.
The Army has now decided to rope in more men into the Valley apart from enhancing the patrol. We need more enforcements as the area that we need to be cover will be wider from now onwards, an officer posted in Kashmir explained. He also said that in a bid to enhance the counter terrorism grid, the Army would also open up most of its posts which are normally shut during the winters.
The Intelligence Bureau in its report to the Union Home Ministry post the Sunjuwan strike has said that there will be a spurt of attacks in the days to come. One could expect a higher frequency of attacks and hence the forces need to be on alert at all times. The IB also speaks about the need for enhanced re-enforcements as it is going to be a long battle ahead in the absence of a harsh winter.