Who are these Terrorists without Weapons?
Over Ground Workers (OGWs) are ‘Terrorist without Weapons’ and can be deadly than them as they look after the travel, administrative and logistics of the active militants. Militants acts on the advice and orders of their mentors, handlers and OGWs. OGWs are the eyes and ears of the militants.
Despite militants on run in Kashmir due to relentless operations by security forces, shocking revelation about the rising graph of Over Ground Workers (OGWs) has forced the security agencies to work out a method or strategy to deal with the new challenge. As per the official report of Kashmir police, it has been revealed that while on one hand, the number of active militants has gone down since 2017, the OGW networks have shown a tremendous rise, raising another concern for the security agencies.
Militants will be sitting ducks if OGW networks are crushed. OGW networks have been designed in such a manner that they help and guide the militants to SF’s disadvantage. The fish will automatically not survive, if we take out the water from the pond. One of the major factors of rise in the numbers of OGWs is that there is a dearth of weapons. In the coming months, they may resort to weapon snatching bids.
Security Forces vs Terrorists without Weapons: Challenges
The security forces are facing a new challenge in Kashmir valley. The presence of ‘Part Time’ or ‘Hybrid Terrorists’ in the valley is posing a big threat. Hybrid or Part Time Terrorists are not listed with the security forces as ‘ULTRAS’ but they are the people who are radicalised and brain washed enough to carry terror strikes and then slip back into their normal routine life. They are the ones who are not listed with any of the security agencies but are in touch with militants, they are trained locally and slip back into their normal life after carrying out one or two attacks. This new trend has sent security agencies into a lather as these‘Hybrid’ or ‘Part Time’ Terrorists are very difficult to track.
In last few weeks, pistol borne youth have shot number of civilians and police personnel and surprisingly these youth are not listed with any of the security and intelligence agencies. With an aim to create an atmosphere of fear amongst local populace, anti-national elements have achieved the agenda of pumping maximum pistols and grenades into the valley. More than 100 pistols have been recovered so far this year.
In the wake of recent civilian killings and subsequent rise in the same, police and security forces have detained almost 500 people across the valley to break the chain of these attacks.
Role of ISI
The new trend is happening in the valley on the certain direction of ISI (spy agency of Pakistan). The desperate NEXUS is modifying methods. Now, it is the preference for pistol based targeting of soft targets. Targets which are unarmed and unlikely to retaliate like businessmen, people from minority community, activists, political leaders without protection and off duty policemen. The aim is to spread fear and stop business and social activity that ‘targets terrorists and their ecosystem’. Now a days, people speaking against separatism and against the perpetrators and instigators of violence are targeted.
It seems as if this type of targeting is not random, but properly planned. A proper planning which involves watching movement patterns and finding a weak part of the routine. The spotter could be an OGW or even a Hybrid Terrorist who is not on the list of any security agency, but has a weapon and intent to kill. It is an ecosystem where only numbers matter, hence the victim may have no particular trait to get killed – just an easy soft target.
Anybody supporting the militants, directly or indirectly is termed as an OGW by police. A person providing a safe passage, information, a safe house or acting as a messenger for suspected militants automatically comes under the radar of the police as an OGW. With the rise in number of OGWs, security forces have decided to formulate a joint strategy for dealing with the new challenge so that situation does not go out of hands after so much of success achieved on the anti-militancy front since past two and half year.