How surgical strikes spooked terrorists and forced a change in plan
Terrorists across the border live in the constant fear that they may be targetted in another surgical strike. India carried out a surgical strike September 2016 following the Uri attack as a result of which the number of infiltrations and cease fire violations by Pakistan dropped.
During the strike, the Indian soldiers were easily able to identify the terrorist camps that were set up across the Line of Control. It was a brazen display, officials say while stating that not once did these Pakistani terrorists realise what was about to fall on them.
Today, the camps have shifted. In fact, the terrorists have come up with a new strategy in which they have shifted their camps to civilian areas in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir. They feel that by living among the civilians, the India Army would find it hard to identify them. They would not be able to tell between the civilians and terrorists.
An Intelligence Bureau report states that new camps are coming up in PoK. All the camps are situated in residential zones. Those camps that were destroyed in the surgical strikes have been discarded by terrorist groups. "Since the strikes, they have not even revisited those sites," an Intelligence Bureau official says.
However, the terrorists are these camps are smaller in number. They feel that if there is increased presence then they would be spotted easily. Terrorists are sent out from Pakistan into PoK depending on the requirement. They have been told to restrict the number of camps to four in which 20 terrorists could be accommodated, officials also say.
Statistics would reveal that the number of violations has come down drastically after the surgical strikes. Prior to the surgical strikes, violations by Pakistan were reported almost every single day. There were 228 ceasefire violations at the Line of Control and 221 at the International Border. However, post the surgical strikes in November 2016, the number of violations at the LoC was 22 and on the IB, 6.
The number of civilian casualties in 2017 has been nil at both the LoC and IB. Prior to the surgical strikes, there were 13 casualties and 83 persons had been injured at the LoC. At the IB, there were 74 persons who were injured while five BSF jawans were martyred and 25 others injured prior to the surgical strikes.
The number of terror strikes too came down drastically. Prior to the November surgical strikes, there were 110 terror incidents just in three months. After the strikes, the number came down to 87.