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In 2018, We Lost Maximum Number of Security Force Personnel in Last 10 Years, There is an Internal Problem: Lt Gen (Retd.) DS Hooda

"As long as there are problems simmering internally, Pakistan will continue to take advantage of it.”

In an interview with the Times Of India, Lieutenant General (Retired) DS Hooda spoke with Rohit E David, discussing India-Pakistan military diplomacy. Speaking about the February 14 Pulwama terror attack, in which close to 40 CRPF jawans lost their lives when an explosive-laden car crashed into their convoy,he retired chief of the Northern Command supervised the 2016 surgical strike said, “The response has to be in all fields: international pressure through other countries, United Nations and also dealing with China which is blocking the designation of Masood Azhar as a global terrorist”.

He said that the increase in ceasefire violation and infiltration could be checked if India put in consistent pressure on Pakistan, adding that “You have one cross border operation and nothing sort of changes.” The veteran officer noted, “I don’t think doing one odd operation in two years is going to make them change their behaviour.”

On being asked about security lapses in the Pulwama episode, Hooda said, “Some basic questions which are being asked are how were they able to get such a huge quantity of explosives? How did they create what appears to be a sophisticated IED? Were all the procedures in place to ensure that civilian vehicles don’t intermingle with CRPF convoys?” 

Hooda, addressing the bigger picture — the situation in Kashmir — said that one cannot close their eyes to the problem. He added, “Over the last three to four years the number of local recruits into terror ranks has increased. The attacks on security forces have increased. Last year we have lost the maximum number of our security force personnel in the last ten years. So, there is an internal problem. I think we need to look at that very seriously to see how these issues can be resolved. There is growing radicalisation. As long as there are problems simmering internally, Pakistan will continue to take advantage of it.”

Also read: Four Soldiers Killed in Encounter in Jammu and Kashmir’s Pulwama

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