Will be tough towards militants, warns Jaitley
Defence Minister, Arun Jaitley, today said that Army will adopt a tough policy towards militants.
Speaking to reporters after the conclusion of GST council meet, he indicated Centre’s tough stance towards militancy and street protests here.
Jaitley also visited the Army’s forward positions on the Line of Control (LoC) in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district and told reporters that the security agencies were on high alert to deal with militants.
“We will go very tough on the militants, especially those who have crossed over from the other side (Pakistan), because they are responsible for the situation (in the Kashmir Valley),” he said.
Jaitley said that the situation has hit the developmental process and that the government will work on a road map to ensure peace in Kashmir.
Jaitley’s hard posture comes after Army chief earlier said that the forces will deal with the youth who surround cordon sites where militants remain holed in, firmly and they will be treated as over ground workers.
The Minister, who reached Srinagar on Wednesday, chaired the two day long GST council meet where tax slabs of the commodities and services were worked out.
He said that overall security scenario was reviewed and troops are on a state of high alert to foil any designs by Pakistani Army.
“Violence eventually impacts security and life of ordinary residents of the Valley; therefore, the violence is not only against security forces but also against innocents who are losing their lives,” he said, adding that the New Delhi will work towards establishing peace in Kashmir.
“It is a great opportunity for us to communicate to the people here that India as a country will show full concern and compassion as far as the average peace-loving citizen is concerned. We want you to have a peaceful and prosperous life,” he said, adding however that when it comes to militants no compassion would be shown.
Earlier, Jaitley had tweeted: “Had a meeting with senior commanders and troops at a forward post along the LoC, and reviewed security situation. Later at the press conference he also reiterated that the troops are maintaining a dominant position.
“The aggressive domination and readiness of the troops for befitting response to any misadventure by enemy is very satisfying,” he said.
On Thursday Defence Minister had ruled out any dialogue with the separatists stating that they were focusing first on ensuring peaceful atmosphere in the region.
General Officer Commanding of the Baramulla-based Dagger Division, Major General R.P. Kalita, accompanied Jaitley to the LoC.
“Jaitley said the entire country recognised the challenging circumstances the troops were operating in and stood behind them in their endeavours,” Defence Ministry spokesman Colonel Rajesh Kalia said.