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Drones Part Of Security Beef-up In Kashmir Ahead Of I-Day

Anees Zargar |
UAVs are keeping a watch over Srinagar’s Anchar and adjacent areas to thwart any protest or hostile activity.
Drones Part Of Security Beef-up In Kashmir Ahead Of I-Day

Image Courtesy: Brighter Kashmir

Technical surveillance, including drone monitoring, is part of the security beef-up in Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) ahead of Independence Day. The police and paramilitary forces are searching vehicles and frisking people in several areas, especially around the venues of functions.

A police spokesperson told the media that unmanned aerial vehicles are “keeping a watch” over Srinagar’s Anchar and adjacent areas to thwart any protest or hostile activity. “Several drones are monitoring the situation within the 2-km radius in and around Anchar and Soura,” the police said.

Massive protests against the abrogation of Article 370 in Anchar and Soura had spread to other areas in 2019.

The security agencies are on high alert with increasing attacks by militants since the last few weeks. Following an encounter between militants and security forces in south Kashmir’s Kulgam district on Thursday, the police claimed to have “averted a major incident”.

A Pakistani-origin militant identified as Usman, believed to be a close aide of recently killed Jaish-e-Mohammad commander Abu Saifullah, was killed in the encounter, the police said.

After a long time, foreign terrorists used an RPG. Besides an AK-47 rifle, rocket launchers and grenades were found. A major incident was averted,” Kashmir inspector general of police Vijay Kumar told reporters.

The J&K administration had directed government employees to participate in I-Day celebrations more actively. All government offices, hospitals and schools have been directed to hoist the national flag and sing the national anthem. Despite schools and colleges remaining shut due to Covid, the administration had recently directed the education department to hold functions, including at schools.

The employees were asked to record the rehearsals and send them to senior administration officials. Many of these rehearsals, including from the Central University of Kashmir, were widely circulated on social media platforms like WhatsApp. “All staff members, including head of schools and staff deployed from YS&S Department, shall sing the ‘Rashtra Gaan’ with the background of a joint banner of School Education and YS&S on 15-08-2021,” read an official order.

Any non-compliance by staff members deployed from YS&S Department shall be viewed seriously and reported to the YS&S Department for necessary action,” according to the order.

The J&K administration has stepped up the I-Day celebrations as part of the intensive countrywide campaign Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav, which also includes hoisting flags across the Valley. The Army, which has already hoisted the national flag in several areas, will hoist a 100-feet high tricolour atop the Koh-e-Maran hillock.

This is a response to former chief minister Mehbooba Mufti, who had claimed that if Article 370 was tinkered with, no one will hoist the Indian flag in Kashmir. But now you can see that tricolours are being hoisted in the Valley,” a senior security official told Newsclick.

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