Centre to take final decision on Valley ceasefire soon.
New Delhi: The Centre is likely to take a final decision on whether the conditional ceasefire in Jammu and Kashmir should be extended or not only after Id. The ceasefire, which led to suspension of all counter-terror operations in the Valley, during the holy month of Ramzan, was announced by the Centre in May.
The issue, along with other security aspects, were discussed at length during a high-level meeting chaired by home minister Rajnath Singh here on Thursday.
Among others present at the meeting were national security adviser Ajit Doval, Army Chief Gen. Bipin Rawat, home secretary Rajiv Gauba and other top intelligence and security officials.
Intelligence and security agencies, sources claimed, were opposed to the idea of extending the ceasefire beyond Ramzan saying it would seriously hamper their operation and also pose a serious threat to the Amarnath Yatra which is scheduled to start later this month.
Security and intelligence agencies also claimed that there was a sharp increase in terror related incidents during the month-long ceasefire duration as 66 such cases were reported as compared to 25 the month before that. However, security sources admitted that there was drop in civilian casualties during the ceasefire period. Intelligence reports suggest that terror groups like Lashkar-e-Tayyaba and Jaish-e-Mohammed had used the ceasefire period to further consolidate and re-group their operatives in the Valley and this could pose a serious threat in the days ahead, particularly to the Amarnath Yatra.
Security agencies are also opposed to extension of ceasefire as a massive exercise will have to be initiated to sanitise and secure routes for ensuring a safe Amarnath Yatra in the next few days for which additional deployment is already being made. “There is a strong possibility that terror outfits may try and target the Yatra so we need to launch a counter offensive before the Yatra starts,’’ a senior security official said.