Kashmir Indepth

Militant recruitment all time low this year, reveal records



Srinagar, Oct 24 : Jammu and Kashmir police on Thursday said that local militant recruitment in Kashmir is all time low this year against previous years as only 30 youth joined militancy so far while nine youth went missing from homes post August 05. Records reveal that out of the total 39 youth who picked up arms this year so far, six returned home and are living a normal life.

Figures available with the wire service police reveal that from January 2019 to October 15 this year, 39 youth are believed to have joined militancy.

“Most of the recruitment took place since March this year but the total local militant recruitment is all time low compared to previous years. This year, so far six youth returned to their homes after joining militancy in Southern districts especially Pulwama, Shopian and Kulgam,” a senior police officer, privy to the figures said.

He said that in Anantnag district no youth joined militancy. “From northern districts like Bandipora, Kuwpara and Baramulla, no youth joined militancy this year,” the official said. He said that the recruitment came down drastically because of the tremendous support by the parents of the youth who had picked up arms. “We contacted the families of youth ensured that they return to their families. Six youth decided to quit the path of violence and are today living a happy life,” the official said.

He said till March 2018, 40 youth had joined various militant organisations in Kashmir. “Last year only four youth returned back. This year, there is a considerable decline in the local militancy which is a good sign,” he said.

In 2017, figures reveal that 43 youth joined militancy. “This was highest post 2016 (Burhan Wani’s killing on July 8, 2016),” the official told.
He said social media and internet played a vital role in luring the youth towards militancy. “Besides there were other factors that include peer pressure, family compulsions, neighbourhood impact,” he said. “Massive funerals and the gun salutes by the militants there was also a major reason. All these measures were taken into consideration while trying to wean away the youth from militancy.”

This year post abrogation of Article 370 on August 05, nine youth went missing and it is believed that they have joined militancy. “But there is no official or other confirmation whether they have really joined the militancy or are simply away from their homes,” the official said. “We are in touch with their families and are hopeful to bring them back.” (KNO)

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