The engagement of youth in positive activities in Jammu and Kashmir poses biggest challenge to the forces, said Director General of Police S P Vaid, who termed as “worrisome” the development of an AMU scholar from the Valley joining militant group Hizbul Mujahideen.
However, the DGP commended the government forces’ efforts in successfully pulling back 85 youths from the path of militancy in the state and said that the situation on ground has improved for good.
Speaking yesterday at a leadership conclave titled “Bridging Divides”, the DGP while expressing satisfaction over the improvement in situation in the Valley claimed there was a drastic decline in stone-pelting incidents.
“Not even one incident of stone pelting was reported on last Friday. There used to be 20 to 25 incidents in one day,” Vaid said.
According to Vaid, a lot of measures were taken to win over the youths of the troubled region, and that “a human face of the forces was projected conveying the message that you are our own boys and we are ready to help you”.
“We were working on the families of some of the boys (local militants) and about 10 boys responded to the appeal of their parents and family and joined their families by leaving the path of violence,” he said, adding that 75 other young boys were also either brought back or prevented from joining militants.
The DGP noted two major disturbing developments too — joining of Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) scholar from Kashmir into the ranks of Hizbul Mujahideen and suicide attack by the son of a policeman in Pulwama district.
“It is not a very healthy development and we are worried,” he said.
Arguing that government employment is not the answer for the rising frustration among the youth, he said India as a nation and J-K as a state need to engage with them.
“There is no outing, nothing for entertainment. There was one mainstay of tourism but due to present situation it has gone down drastically.
“We should come up with measures and multi-pronged strategy to deal with this as it is a big challenge for us,” he added.
Special Director General of CRPF (Jammu and Kashmir zone) N Shrivastava and former State DGP Kuldeep Khoda were also part of the discussion panel.