Satellites, drones to monitor 40-day long Amarnath Yatra: Spl DG

JAMMU: Asserting that all security arrangements are in place, Special DG CRPF S N Srivastva today said that satellites and drones would monitor 40-day long annual Amarnath Yatra starting from here tomorrow.
“Foolproof security arrangements are made for this year’s yatra and there is no compromise on security part,” Mr Srivastva told mediapersons here this afternoon while taking a stock of arrangements made at the Bhagwati Nagar based Yatri Niwas here-the base camp Shri Amarnath Yatris.
“This year the yatra will also be monitored with the help of satellites and drones,” he said and added, “police, para-military forces are jointly in coordination with each other and ensuring security of the pilgrims.”
The DG further said that 30,000 troops have also been deployed throughout for smooth and incident-free conduct of the yatra. “Besides heavy deployment of troops and monitoring through surveillance devices, bullet proof vehicles will escort the convoy of pilgrims,” said Srivastva.
He further said that closed circuit cameras are installed along the highway and some of the prominent and identified locations to keep vigil on any suspicious movement, activity. On stone-pelting incidents in Kashmir valley, the DG while expressing concern said, “it is a challenge but we are prepared and ready to counter such acts.”
The Special DG, however, appealed to the people to come in large and without any fear participate in annual feature. The first batch will leave from here tomorrow morning and officially from Srinagar on June 29.
Meanwhile in Srinagar “Intelligence input received from SSP Anantnag reveals that terrorists have been directed to eliminate 100 to 150 pilgrims and about 100 police officers and officials,” according to a letter sent by Inspector General of Police (Kashmir Zone) Muneer Khan to the Army, the CRPF, and range DIGs in the state.
“The input is assessed to be a HUMINT (human intelligence) and it needs further corroboration,” the IGP said in the letter.
At this stage, the possibility of a sensational attack by a terrorist outfit cannot be ruled out, he said.
“The attack may be in the form of stand-off fire on yatra convoy which they believe will result in flaring of communal tensions throughout the nation,” the IGP said in the letter which is being circulated in many groups on Whatsapp.
All the officers and officials deployed on the ground need to remain alert and maintain utmost vigil, he added in the letter whose copy got leaked and went viral on social media.
Khan later tried to play it down, saying there was no need to panic as it was part of information being shared with agencies to check its authenticity.
Jammu and Kashmir DGP S P Vaid said someone has spread it on social media to create panic.
The government has mobilised a heavy security blanket of over 35,000 to 40,000 troops including the police, the Army, the BSF and the CRPF.
In addition to the existing strength of the CRPF in the state, the Centre has provided over 250 companies (25,000 personnel) of paramilitary forces to the state government.
The BSF has deployed over 2,000 troops for the yatra while the Army has provided 5 battalions (about 5000 personnel) and additional 54 companies (5400 personnel) of the police have also been mobilised.