SRINAGAR, Aug 2 - Pakistan-based terrorists are planning to target the ongoing Amarnath Yatra, the Army said on Friday citing intelligence inputs, prompting the Jammu and Kashmir administration to ask the yatris and tourists to �curtail� their stay in the Valley and leave immediately.
Stating that weapons and explosives have been recovered along the yatra route, a top Army official said security forces are geared up to foil any attempt to attack the pilgrimage. The yatra commenced on July 1 and is to conclude on August 15.
General Officer Commanding (GoC) of Army�s 15 Corps Lt Gen KJS Dhillon said searches in the past few days by security forces led to the recovery of a Pakistan-made mine and a huge cache of arms.
The Corps commander said Pakistan and its Army were desperate to disrupt peace in Kashmir Valley.
�Last three to four days, we were getting specific and confirmed intelligence inputs that terrorists led by Pakistan and Pakistan Army are trying to target the Shri Amarnathji Yatra which is going on,� Dhillon told a joint press conference.
Dhillon said joint teams of security forces launched searches along the twin routes of Baltal and Pahalgam leading to the holy cave and recovered weapons, ammunition and explosives in the operations that have been going on for the past three days.
�We had some major successes during the searches. Some IEDs were recovered which have been neutralised. The searches have yielded an American M-24 (Sniper) rifle and an anti-personnel mine with Pakistan Ordnance factory markings on it, which clearly indicates that Pakistan is involved in terrorism in Kashmir,� he said.
�I can assure you on behalf of the security forces here that this will not be allowed to happen. Designs of Pakistan and its Army will be foiled at all costs. Nobody can disrupt peace in Kashmir. This is our promise to people of Kashmir and everyone in the nation,� he added.
The Governor�s administration issued a security advisory, saying pilgrims and tourists �may curtail their stay� and �return as soon as possible�.
�Keeping in view the latest intelligence inputs of terror threats, with specific targeting of the Amarnath Yatra, and given the prevailing security situation in the Kashmir Valley, in the interest of safety and security of the tourists and Amarnath Yatris, it is advised that they may curtail their stay in the Valley immediately and take necessary measures to return as soon as possible,� said the advisory by Principal Secretary (Home).
DGP Singh said reports about massive deployment of security forces in the State were exaggerated.
�We have had a number of tasks over the past nine months, like elections to panchayats, urban local bodies and Parliament. Then the Amarnath Yatra is also going on. The forces did not have any rest during this period.
�So some forces are being de-inducted while some are being inducted as replacement. The numbers in the media are exaggerated,� Singh said.
Dhillon said the situation along the Line of Control (LoC) now is under control and peaceful. � PTI