Attack Aftermath: Over 50 Held In Rajouri As Searches Intensified

Army personnel conduct searches in Dhangri area of Rajouri on January 2, 2023. PTI photo

Rajouri/Jammu- Over 50 people have been detained so far for questioning in connection with the attack on the minority community in Dhangri villageĀ  in Rajouri district of Jammu and Kashmir even as a massive search operation to track down the militants behind the strike continued on the ninth day on Tuesday, officials said.

Seven persons were killed and 14 others injured in the militant attack on January 1.

Following the attack, the administration strengthened Village Defence Guards (VDGs) comprising local volunteers and the border grid to keep a tight vigil on possible infiltration routes, the officials said.

They said police posters announcing a reward of Rs 10 lakh to anyone giving credible information about the militants have also come up at various places in the district.

A joint cordon and search operation by the Army, police and CRPF is in progress at over two dozen villages where there were reports of militants presence before the attack, the officials said, adding special operational teams of Jammu and Kashmir police, moved from outside Rajouri, have also been deployed at designated locations.

“Anti-terrorist operation is going on at a massive scale to neutralise the terrorists involved in the Dhangri attack. There are some vital leads and we are working on these to bring the culprits to book,” Senior Superintendent of Police Rajouri, Mohammad Aslam told PTI.

He said additional troops of the CRPF along with police were deployed in sensitive areas to strengthen vigil.

Officials said over 50 suspects have been detained so far during the ongoing operation and are being questioned for their alleged links with militants.

They said several vital leads have been found during questioning of the suspected persons and it was almost clear that the militants were present in the town before carrying out the attack.

Police have also deployed additional personnel at border posts as part of enhanced security near the Line of Control (LoC) to keep a close vigil on notorious infiltration routes, the officials said.

Meanwhile, as part of efforts to strengthen VDGs and sharpen their firing skills, the officials said the Indian Army held a special firing practice session for the volunteers in Mahadev Menka firing range in Sunderbani sector this morning.

Over 50 VDGs, drawn from different villages along the LoC, took part in the firing practice session which was held in coordination with local police, the officials said.

They said weapon handlers and shooting experts of the Army demonstrated proper use of weapons to VDGs who later practised firing.

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