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50% drop in deaths of security men in J&K in 2020

There has been a 50 per cent decline in incidents of security forces killed in Jammu & Kashmir during operations this year so far compared to last year's corresponding period, data has revealed.

As per the data compiled by the Jammu & Kashmir Police, a total of 36 security personnel were killed this year between January and July while the number was 76 last year during the same period. However, the data said, injuries to security forces have increased this year.

A total of 138 security force personnel were injured this year so far compared to last year's 107 cases during January to July, the data says, adding the number was more than 3,300 during the Burhan Wani incident in 2016.

More than 3,300 security personnel from Jammu & Kashmir Police and central paramilitary forces were injured while maintaining law and order in the valley in over 1,000 violent incidents in Kashmir since the killing of Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani in an encounter with security forces on July 8, 2016, the J&K Police said.

Speaking on the trend, Jammu & Kashmir Director General of Police Dilbag Singh told IANS that casualties of security forces during operations have been very low this year compared to previous years following strategic action against active anti-national groups and banning of several organizations like Jamaat-e-Islami by the Centre.

The officer said that 504 separatists have been freed after signing a 'Good Behaviour Bond' and they will be caught soon if they violate law and order and instigate youths to get involved in stone-pelting and other anti-government activities. A total of 104 people of Jamaat and Hurriyat were booked last year and 13 this year under Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA), said the DGP, adding that "top separatist leaders like Ashraf Sehrai and Amir Hamza were arrested when we came to know that they are expected to succeed Syed Ali Shah Geelani as Chairman of the hardline faction of All Parties Hurriyat Conference."

As per the data, overall law and order incidents have also declined to 102 this year compared to last year's 389 cases from January to July. There is 73 per cent decline this year compared to last year. The data further reveals that the J&K Police has so far registered 261 FIRs under UAPA and arrested 444 people.

Last year, the data says, 395 cases under UAPA were registered and 849 people were arrested. In terms of law and order incidents, following the abrogation of Article 370, incidents in Jammu & Kashmir below 50 per cent, says the data, adding it was not even 8 per cent in terms of violence.

In terms of intensity, the J&K Police chief said these cases are nowhere close to the Burhan Wani period as "no one was killed and not a single bullet was fired post abrogation". Post abrogation, the number of civilians injured during operations was around 70 while around 200 security personnel suffered injuries, reveals the data.

The police chief of the erstwhile state said this is due to the restraint of the security forces.

"The force injuries were more than three times the civilian injuries. Neither civilians nor security personnel was killed in the incidents."

The officer said that the people here have cooperated and the police have tried to increase their cooperation level so far. "Under the current scenario, Jammu and Kashmir Police has one of the best relations with the public. The people and Kashmir might have 10 grievances against civil, service delivery and governance. But the grievances against the police will be limited and motivated," the DGP said.

"There may be issues on the governance level but the situation on obedience level is better. Dande maar ke nahi karwaya hai (we did not do it by force). It all happened because of the neat and clear actions of the police."

According to the data, this year a total of 124 terrorism-related incidents were noted in Jammu & Kashmir compared to 198 reported last year from January to July. These incidents include shooting, hurling of grenades, kidnapping, burning of government property and raising TRF flags.

"There is 37 per cent decline in these incidents," he said..