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Army Needs to be Redeployed in J&K's Chenab Valley to Check Rise of Militancy, Says BJP Minister

BJP leader and former deputy chief minister Kavinder Gupta said he along with other senior leaders visited Kishtwar and every person there was asking for the safety of Hindus residing in the area.

PTI

Updated:November 4, 2018, 9:49 PM IST
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Army Needs to be Redeployed in J&K's Chenab Valley to Check Rise of Militancy, Says BJP Minister
Image for representation.(PTI photo)
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Jammu: The BJP leader and former deputy chief minister Kavinder Gupta on Sunday advocated redeployment of Army and strengthening of village defence committees (VDC) in Chenab valley of Jammu and Kashmir, claiming the recent assassination of a party leader and his brother in Kishtwar was part of a strategy to restart terror activities in the region.

"To check the rise of militancy in Chenab valley, Army needs to be redeployed...I will be discussing the issue with Union minister Rajnath Singh," Gupta said addressing a function here.

State Secretary of BJP Anil Parihar and his brother Ajeet Parihar were assassinated by suspected militants in a late night attack in Kishtwar town on Thursday while they were on way to their home.

Gupta said he along with other senior leaders visited Kishtwar and every person there was asking for the safety of Hindus residing in the area.

Chenab Valley lies between the middle and outer Himalayan range and is divided into three districts - Doda, Ramban, and Kishtwar besides two constituencies of Reasi.

The valley also touches the Anantnag district of Kashmir.

Chenab Valley comprises three districts, Ramban, Doda and Kishtwar of Jammu and touches the Anantnag district of Kashmir. Once a hotbed of terrorism, the valley has been peaceful after security forces purged the ultras from that area.

Referring to the assassination of the Parihar brothers, he said "this is well planned strategy of the pro-Pakistan Hurriyat and its allies to restart terror activities in the Chenab Valley."

He said the VDC's functional in the area needs to be strengthened otherwise there are chances that terrorists may resort to "killing of Hindus living in the remote villages".

"Large number of VDC weapons has been withdrawn by vested administration in the Chenab valley over a period of time," Gupta said, adding VDC were sanctioned in the tenure of NDA-1 and played a very crucial role in the control and elimination of the militancy from the region.

He said there was need of conducting security review of leaders and families who have fought anti-national forces in Chenab region in the last 30 years.

"The selective killing of Hindu leaders in the region can lead to migration and this incident is eye opener for the security forces and the government," he said.

Curfew was relaxed for four hours Sunday in Kishtwar town where it was imposed as a precautionary measure on Thursday night following the killing of Parihar brothers.

The killing had triggered massive protests across Jammu region following which the authorities suspended internet services in the curfew-bound areas, while the internet speed was slowed down in the rest of the division, including the winter capital Jammu.

However, the internet speed was restored in Jammu and other parts of the division on Saturday evening.

The Army also staged a flag march in the sensitive areas to help the district administration in Kishtwar maintain law and order.

On Thursday, the Parihar brothers were walking towards their home in Parihar mohalla through a dark lane in Tapal Mohalla when they were fired upon from a close range by suspected militants around 8.40pm. The assailants were apparently waiting for the brothers to return home.

The government has constituted a special investigation team (SIT) to probe the killing and directed it to expedite the investigation and submit its report as early as possible.
| Edited by: Padmaja Venkataraman
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