Hamirpur: The three-tier border fencing along the LoC has turned into a "death trap" for infiltrating militants, leading to desperation among militant ranks and has prompted repeated firings on Indian posts from across the border, the Army has said.
Commanding the front brigade deployed to guard the LoC in forward sectors, Sengupta said, "There is firing on the fencing at times from across due to desperation caused as a result of failure to push in armed militants this side. They are violating ceasefire, targeting Indian forward posts and resorting to mortar firing".
Armed with thermal imagers and surveillance equipment, the fencing from Malu (Akhnoor) in Jammu district to Kanzalwan in Kupwara district of Kashmir Valley covering 490 kms of LoC and 190 kms of International Border from Malu to Pathankote in Punjab has become a major hurdle for infiltrating militants.
As per intelligence reports, there are over 300 militants waiting across the LoC to infiltrate for the past three to four months but they are unable to cross over due to fencing and increased vigilance by troops and ground surveillance equipment, the Army officer said.
"They fire on posts to force jawans to keep their movement restricted to posts so that they can try and engineer infiltration of militants," he said."Not even a single infiltration has taken place this year in this sector. All infiltration bids have been foiled", Maj Gen VP Singh, who is looking after operational control of 220 kms long LoC in Rajouri-Poonch region, said.
The Army feels the border fencing along the Indo-Pak border has virtually turned into a death trap for ultras, as 28 infiltrating militants were killed when troops foiled bids this year.
Passing through dense woods, narrow valleys and riverine areas along the LoC and international border, the fence has proved to a major deterrent against cross-border infiltration as it acts as a "round-the-clock" guard, the Army officers said.
"The Army continues to maintain a state of high alert along LoC and work on repairing parts of the fence damaged due to snowfall continues rapidly to make this round-the-clock guard more effective," they said.
The Army has also mapped new probable routes of infiltration and vigilance was being maintained by soldiers equipped with ground sensors, thermal imagers and battlefield surveillance radars, they said.
The Line of Control and International Border in Poonch sector and Jammu frontier have become hot and active with Pakistani troops violating ceasefire and repeatedly attacking forward posts. Six jawans were killed and 11 people injured in ceasefire violations and firing by Pakistan troops on forwards post, civilian areas and patrolling parties along Indo-Pak border during August.
People living along the LoC are relaxed as the fencing has brought down infiltration.
"Earlier, militants used to stay in their houses, take food at gunpoint and misbehave with their womenfolk," they said, adding, "Now border dwellers are fully supporting Army against infiltrating militants".
According to intelligence reports, of the 1300-1450 militants set to be pushed into India, over 1000 were in 21 camps and launching pads along the LoC and 450 in four bases along the IB.
These included Bagh, Kahuta, Hazira, Goi, Jandro, Nikia, Sensa, Mirpur, Khuiratta, Saman, Zafarwal and Sialkote forward, it said.
The launching pads are at Bhimber, Bindi, Samani, Marar, Shakergarh, Dhallapur, Manana, Nikial, Goi, Sensa, Hajira, Ralaur and Garnun opposite Kathua in Jammu-Rajouri-Poonch sector.
Around 300 militants are in Chirat-Kahuta-Goi area and 150-155 in Sensa-Kotli-Nakial belt opposite Poonch.