SRINAGAR: Days after a drone carrying IEDs and sticky bombs were shot down in a village near the Line of Control in Kathua district, the security forces in Jammu and Kashmir say that they are constantly strategizing to deal with the ever-increasing threat of drones.
Since last year (June) there has been a surge in such spotting of drones in parts of J&K. The surge was recorded after the June 27 drone attack on the Indian Air Force (IAF) base in Jammu in which two IAF personnel were injured and the rooftop of one of the buildings was left damaged.
“Countermeasures to tackle drone threat have been in place and these would be further strengthened to defeat any conspiracy against peace,” a senior police officer told The New Indian. “Because of countermeasures, the drones are being shot down when they cross the line from across the border.”
Describing it as an exponential proliferation of new technologies, the drone system had made the task of combating terror even little challenging.
Even the senior officials of the security establishment said that sticky bombs and drones could be a challenge for security forces in Kashmir for smooth conduct of the forthcoming annual pilgrimage to the holy Amarnath cave shrine in Anantnag.
Last Saturday, the Jammu and Kashmir Police foiled a major terror plan by shooting down a Pakistani drone in Kathua district’s Talli Hariya Chak village in Hiranagar, just 3 km from the international border.
The drone was shot down following information from villagers about some drone activity in the area over the past two-three days. A police party from the Rajbagh police station was sent to the area early morning to carry out searches. “The police search party, too, noticed a drone coming from the Pakistan side and it lowered its height over a field. The police opened fire at the drone, bringing it down,” police said.
Drone coming from across the border was shot down in Talli Hariya Chak under Rajbagh PS in Kathua district. The drone has a payload attachment with it which is being screened by the bomb disposal experts.
“They (experts) separated the payload attachment from the flying machine and found seven sticky/magnetic-type bombs, besides an equal number of grenades,” the Kathua district police chief said.
The shooting down of drone and seizure of sticky bombs and UBGL grenades by police assumes significance as the upcoming Amarnath yatra, which will be the first after the Central government’s August 5, 2019, the decision of stripping Jammu and Kashmir of its special status, is only a month away.
The threat of sticky bombs, especially during the upcoming Amarnath yatra, is being taken seriously by the police and security forces in view of the May 13 Katra bus fire incident, which is suspected to have been caused by a sticky bomb. Four persons had died and more than 20 were injured in that incident.