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Infiltration level in J&K has come down to zero: Army
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March 29, 2007 17:59 IST

For the first time since the outbreak of militancy in Jammu and Kashmir about 17 years ago, the army on Thursday said the infiltration level has come down to 'zero', but asserted that any troop withdrawal should take place only after normalcy was completely restored in the troubled state.

"At present, the infiltration level has come down to zero. One of the reasons could be the heavy snowfall this winter. The mountain peaks have witnessed heavy snowfall this winter," XV Corps General Officer-in-Commanding Lt Gen A S Sekhon told reporters on the sidelines of a felicitation function in Srinagar.

However, he said the militant infrastructure across the Line of Control in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir was intact.

"Hundreds of militants are waiting across the border to cross over to this side," Gen Sekhon added.

The corps commander also ruled out the possibility of a "hot" summer in Kashmir, saying some trouble could be anticipated but not on a large scale.

He said militancy in Kashmir was under control and at the same time, preparations were underway in the training camps across the LoC to cause large scale disturbances in the Valley.

"How far they would execute their plans... we can only wait and watch... but we are fully prepared to thwart their nefarious designs," the GOC asserted.

About demilitarisation, he said it was a political decision, which would be taken only after a thorough study of the ground situation in the strife-torn state.

"But, we want to stay till complete normalcy is restored in Jammu and Kashmir. I would not go to the extent of saying that the army should be pulled out of the state," Gen Sekhon added.

He also ruled out the army's involvement in fake encounters, saying the troops act on specific information and carry out counter-insurgency operations in a systematic manner.

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