Identify J&K Civilians Who Might be Terror Targets, Work on Protection Plan: Centre to Forces, Agencies

Multiple agencies and security forces in Jammu and Kashmir have begun the ground work to narrow down the list of civilians who might be on the target list of terrorists, and formulate a plan to protect them.

Sources said agencies began working on the plan after a recent security review meeting chaired by Union Home Minister Amit Shah. Officials from different agencies had visited J&K a few days ago to work out a roadmap and gather ground-level information.

The Union Territory had noted a steep rise in civilian killings since October last year. The Ministry of Home Affairs has tasked the NIA with registering a case to probe the larger conspiracy behind the civilian killings.

“In the meeting, concerns were raised over targeted killings and it has been decided and directed to identify probable targets by analysing patterns, data, and other information. Intelligence agencies were asked to give ground-level intelligence and local administration has been asked to prepare a plan to protect these probable targets. A meeting has already been held in this regard this month,” a top-level government official confirmed.

News18 has learned that once all security and intelligence agencies identify vulnerable area and people under threat, central forces will be asked to provide security to them. Since it is not possible to provide security to an individual, agencies are planning different action plans.

“Patterns in areas and time have been analysed. Most of the targeted killings took place in the afternoon or Evening. It has been found that the terrorists, after killing civilians, left the spot in similar ways,” a source said.

The plan also reportedly includes shifting the base of various offices of central police forces deployed in J&K to locations where vulnerable populations live. Training centres and other bases of forces that were located in isolated places have also been shifted to locations that house infrastructure of other forces.

A Kashmir Pandit was shot dead and his brother wounded three weeks ago in an apple orchard in Chotigam area of south Kashmir’s Shopian district.

In July this year, the central government had said that as many as 118 civilians, including five Kashmiri Pandits and 16 other Hindus and Sikhs, were killed in Jammu and Kashmir since the abrogation of Article 370 in 2019.

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