A huge cache of arms and ammunition and “war-like stores”, including AK-74 rifles, Pakistani-origin hand grenades and balloons with ‘I Love Pakistan’ markings, were recovered along the Line of Control (LoC) in Uri Sector of Jammu and Kashmir’s Baramulla district, an Army officer said on Friday.
The recoveries were made at a time when there is huge desperation on the Pakistani side to either infiltrate terrorists or smuggle war-like stores into Kashmir as the number of ultras and arms and ammunition was at an all-time low in the Valley, he said.
Giving details, General Officer Commanding (GOC) of Army’s 19 Infantry Division Major General Ajay Chandpuria said based on intelligence inputs received from multiple intelligence agencies over a period of two weeks about infiltration attempts and dumping of war-like stores by terrorists in the Hathlanga area of Rampur Sector in Uri, multiple ambushes and search operations were conducted along the LoC.
On Friday, a search operation was launched in the general area of Hathlanga Nala which lasted for eight hours and concluded with the recovery of arms, ammunition and war-like stores, he said.
The recoveries include eight AK-74 rifles, 24 AK-74 rifle magazines, 560 7.62mm AK-74 live ammunition, 12 .30mm Chinese pistols, 24 Chinese pistol magazines, 244 .30mm pistol live ammunition, nine Chinese hand grenades, five Pakistani-origin hand grenades, 81 balloons with “I Love Pakistan” marking on them, and five synthetic gunny nags with Pakistani marking, the Army officer said.
“The situation is near normal in Kashmir valley as the number of terrorists and the availability of war-like stores is at an all-time low. So, there is huge desperation from the other side to either infiltrate terrorists or smuggle war-like stores,” he told reporters in Baramulla.
Security forces keep getting such reports on a regular basis and whether it was an attempt by terrorists or smugglers to get war-like stores cannot be said, Major Gen Chandpuria said, referring to the recovery of the weapons.
“We are still following up the leads and certain details cannot be shared, but a movement close to the launchpads was picked up. Probably, they (terrorists) panicked and left the war-like stores behind and withdrew to that side,” he said.
Maj Gen Chandpuria said there have been attempts on the border not only of infiltration but also of smuggling war-like stores and drugs in the past as well.
“There are some areas like this one where we have houses ahead of the LoC fence, closer to the LoC, and because of the movement of the people right to the LoC, such attempts are reported from time to time,” he said.
In this sector, this year, in about 6-8 operations along the LoC or close to the LoC, 14 AK rifles, 20 pistols, one M16 rifle, 76 hand grenades, 1226 AK rounds, 484 9mm rounds, 15 kg of drugs and 10 more suspicious narcotics packets have been recovered, the Army officer said.
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