New Delhi: Jammu and Kashmir's Pulwama district on Thursday afternoon, witnessed one of the biggest militant attacks in the history of the state in which 40 CRPF personnel were killed. The number of fatalities is expected to rise.
The incident happened at the Pulwama highway at 3:30 PM, when a militant named Adil Ahmad Dar alias Waqas, rammed an explosive-laden Scorpio SUV into the Security Forces' convoy.
The militancy-hit state has seen a steady rise in violence and the number of casualties.
According to data compiled by the South Asia Terrorism Portal (SATP), a Delhi-based open data source, the number of fatalities in the valley have increased in the last six years after recording a low in the year 2012. It is to be noted, SATP only records killings in cross-border firings and militant encounters and doesn't compile data for killings during clashes.
Since 2008, out of the 3,287 total recorded fatalities in J&K, 740 were Security Forces personnel, accounting for about 23 percent of the total casualty figure. Nearly, 218 SFs have been killed in the state since 2017 when the army launched 'Operation All Out'.
Thursday's attack was one of the biggest militant attacks in Kashmir in the last two decades. Last time a car bombing of such magnitude happened, was in 2001, when JeM carried out a suicide bomb attack outside the Srinagar secretariat killing 38 people and injuring 40 others.
After this attack, the death toll among Security Forces personnel this year has reached 40, which is 42 percent of the total SF fatalities in 2018.
Violence on the rise
Fatalities in the state had declined from a high of 541 in 2008, which included 69 civilians, 90 security forces personnel and 382 militants, to 117 in 2012 comprising of 16 civilians, 17 SFs and 84 militants.
The year 2018, was the bloodiest year in the valley since then, with a total 457 casualties. This includes 86 civilians, 95 SFs and 276 militants. Civilian and SF fatalities in 2018 were even higher than in 2008.