Will Ensure Youth Are Kept Away From Militancy: J&K DGP

J&K Director General of Police Dilbag Singh | KO File Photo

Jammu- Security forces will ensure youngsters are saved from the clutches of militants, Jammu and Kashmir DGP Dilbag Singh said on Friday as a 17-year-old boy, who recently joined militant ranks, is reportedly holed up at a house in Baramulla amid an encounter.

The teenager has been identified as Faisal Hafiz, a resident of Aripanthan village at Budgam in Central Kashmir and on Thursday, his mother made a passionate appeal asking him to come out and surrender.

Four militants, including top Lashkar-e-Taiba commander Yousuf Kantroo, one of the longest-surviving militants in the Valley, have already been gunned down in the North Kashmir village where the encounter started on Thursday. Hafiz's fate is unknown.

Responding to a question about Hafiz's mother making the appeal, the director general of police (DGP) said Pakistani agencies are leaving no stone unturned to "pollute the young minds" in Kashmir.

"We have ensured in many cases that such people, who have been deviated from the mainstream and from their studies, are brought back and reunited with their families. We have succeeded in many cases, Singh said.

He clarified that the police brought Hafiz's family members to Malwah, after which they made the appeal to him, asking him to surrender.

I think it was a group of four to five militants and some of them are very hardened militants, including may be one or two from Pakistan, the DGP said about those trapped in the house.

Speaking about Hafiz, he said, Maybe they (the other militants) did not allow him and he has not been able to escape from their clutches. Such incidents are taking place where families are absolutely in pain.

Singh said whenever a boy goes missing from the Valley, his parents approach the police seeking help.

They also make an appeal to the militant outfits saying their boy is innocent. They are not interested in any kind of violence. People are registering this and we are with the people we will continue to ensure that the youth are saved from the clutches of militants who are trying to force them into militancy, he said.

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