The Indian Army on Saturday said Pakistan’s steps against Hafiz Saeed-led Jamaat-ud-Dawah were “good moves” but the effect of them need to be gauged on ground.
“It is a significant move (by Pakistan). We are waiting and watching as to how the ban on JuD would manifest on ground,” General Officer Commanding of Army’s Srinagar-based 15 Corps, Lt. General Subrata Saha told reporters in Srinagar.
He said all necessary precautions have been taken in view of the high profile visit of U.S. President Barack Obama.
“Adequate care is being taken to foil all (nefarious) designs in view of the visit of the U.S. President,” Lt. Gen. Saha said.
He said while security forces had good success against militants during the last year, there were reports of over 150 militants waiting at various launch pads on the other side of the Line of Control to infiltrate in the Valley.
“According to our assessment, there are 150 to 160 militants waiting at launch pads to sneak in... there are around 17 launch pads,” he said.
Security has been beefed up across the Valley, especially in the summer capital of the state, to thwart any militant attacks ahead or during the visit of the U.S. President, who will be arriving in New Delhi on Sunday.
Police and paramilitary forces have been deployed around sensitive installations to ensure peaceful conduct of Republic Day celebrations and an incident-free Valley during Mr. Obama’s stay in India.
Special security check points have been set up at all entry and exit points into the city and major towns of the Valley, where random frisking of pedestrians and checking of vehicles are being conducted to keep militants at bay.
Police and other security forces have been asked to intensify area domination patrols especially during the night hours to check the movement of suspected persons.
In addition, sharp shooters are being deployed in the close vicinity of Bakshi Stadium, the main venue of Republic Day function in the Valley.
Almost all separatists including leaders of different factions of Hurriyat Conference have called for observance of “black day” on January 26, 2015 to press for early resolution of the Kashmir issue.
Chief of Al Umar Mujahideen Mushtaq Ahmad Zargar alias Latram, who was one of the three militants released in exchange of passengers of hijacked Indian Airlines plane in 1999, also called for a shutdown.