Admitting that highly trained Pakistani terrorists have sneaked into the twin border districts of Poonch and Rajouri, General Officer Commanding-in-Chief (GoC-in-C) Northern Command Lt General Upendra Dwivedi on Friday asserted that this mountainous belt would be free from terrorism within one year.

While paying tributes to the five Bravehearts of the Army including two Captains who lost their lives in the line of duty during the Solki encounter in the Kalakote area of the Rajouri district of Jammu and Kashmir, Lt General Dwivedi said that about 20 to 25 terrorists are operating in the mountainous belt known as Pir Panchal range.

"We have intensified our operations to wipe out terrorism from this area. We are confident to control the situation within one year," he said.

Lt Gen Upinder Dwivedi
Defence PRO

While pointing towards four days long fierce gun battle in the Kalakote area, he said, "We have lost our Army personnel but we have eliminated the terrorists. Our brave soldiers did the work of eliminating the trained foreign terrorists without thinking about their own lives".
"This is a major setback to the terrorists' eco-system and Pakistan. 20-25 terrorists could be operating in the area. We should be able to control the situation in one year", Lt General Dwivedi said.

Pakistani terrorist
Pakistani terrorist Quari killed by security forces during Rajouri encounter.Social media video clip

Killed terrorists were trained in Afghanistan

The Army commander said that the two terrorists killed during the four-day-long operation were trained in Afghanistan and other countries and their killing was a major setback to terrorism and its eco-system in the Rajouri-Poonch area.

He said that the supreme sacrifices made by five Army soldiers including two captains have raised the morale of troops and all are committed to eliminating the terrorists from the Jammu and Kashmir.

Both slain terrorists were Pakistani terrorists, trained in Afghanistan, and were experts in sniper shooting. One of them was identified as Quari.

Quari, a top LeT commander, was active in Rajouri-Poonch along with his group for the past one year, police said, adding that he is also believed to be the mastermind of Dhangri and Kandi attacks in the Rajouri district.

Defence PRO

Tributes paid to soldiers

Jammu and Kashmir Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha, Northern Army Commander Lieutenant General Upendra Dwivedi, army officers, and police on Friday paid floral tributes to the five soldiers who lost their lives during the Rajouri encounter.

The mortal remains of the four army personnel were brought to the Army General Hospital in Jammu from Rajouri where a wreath-laying ceremony was organized.
Mortal remains of Havildar Abdul Majid (Para) of Ajote of Poonch was sent directly to his native place from Rajouri.

Sinha, Lt Gen Dwivedi, Chief Secretary AK Mehta, DGP RR Swain, Divisional Commissioner Ramesh Kumar, and IGP Anand Jain were among a large number of officials of armed forces, civilians, and police who paid tributes to the martyred army men with full military honours.

Those who laid down their lives fighting terrorists were Captain MV Pranjal (63 RR) of the Mangalore area of Karnataka, Captain Shubham Gupta (9 Para) of Agra of Uttar Pradesh, Havildar Abdul Majid (Para) of Ajote in Poonch, J-K; Lance Naik Sanjay Bist of Halli Padli area of Nainital, Uttarakhand; and Paratrooper Sachin Laur of Aligarh, Uttar Pradesh.