Kashmiri minors heading to PoK to join militants stopped, reunited with family

Two minors who had fled from their homes in south Kashmir last month, allegedly with the intention to cross over to Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (PoK) to become militants, have been apprehended and handed over to their families on Saturday, army officials said.

The spokesman said the boys-- 16 years of age-- from Shopian and Pulwama districts were influenced by the “false narrative and the rhetoric” created by anti-national elements to join an unidentified tanzeem (outfit).

The official said after security forces learnt of the boys’ intention to cross the LoC, synergised efforts were launched to track their movements and apprehend them alive so that they could “be brought back to the mainstream”.

Indian Army received input of their presence at Uri in Baramulla district on January 25.

“The youth sensing tight security at Uri were returning to Baramulla to exploit other routes for exfiltration. Based on the input, a Mobile Vehicle Check Post (MVCP) was deployed at Ganthmulla Colony on national highway 1A. The post was instructed to exercise absolute restraint so as to apprehend them without any harm,” he said.

The boys were travelling on a bus from Uri to Baramulla which was apprehended at Ganthmulla. The youth were counselled and handed over to their parents.

“Parents of youth were thankful to the security forces for ensuring the safety of their children & bring them back to the mainstream,” the officer said.

Last year in December, police had apprehended five Pulwama youths, including four minors, who were preparing to cross the LoC.

On January 25, inspector general of police, Vijay Kumar said that around 125 militants, most of them locals, were active in south Kashmir.

By: Hindustan Times

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