10:10 GMT +322 October 2019
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    Pakistani reporters and troops visit the site of an Indian airstrike in Jaba, near Balakot, Pakistan, Tuesday, Feb. 26, 2019

    Indian Minister: After Dogfight With Pakistan, Infiltration Declined by Nearly Half

    © AP Photo / Aqeel Ahmed
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    New Delhi (Sputnik): Proclaiming the zero-tolerance policy adopted to stabilise the disputed Kashmir region, the Indian government on Tuesday claimed that infiltration from across the border has been reduced by 43 per cent after the Balakot strike on 26 February.

    Minister of State for Home Affairs Nityanand Rai said the security situation in Jammu and Kashmir has seen a sharp improvement thanks to India’s multi-pronged approach to containing cross-border infiltration.

    "Due to concerted and synergised efforts of security forces, the security situation in the state has witnessed an improvement in the first half of this year, over the corresponding period in 2018. Net infiltration has [been]reduced by 43 per cent," the Minister of State for Home Affairs said in response to queries from parliament on Tuesday.

    India, which has been struggling with and fighting terrorism since 1990, saw some relief thanks to efforts by proactive state services which have successfully lowered the number of youths who joined militant groups this year.

    Government records show that the number of young men who joined extremist organizations declined by 40%, and the number of terrorists that were neutralised increased by 22% compared to the first six months of 2018.

    The Indian Army and the state administration have warned parents in Kashmir to encourage their children to shun violence and join the mainstream.

    According to Indian Home Ministry statistics, a total of 249 terrorists were eliminated in 2018, while in the first six months of this year, at least 120 terrorists were neutralised in Kashmir.

    Multi-tiered deployment along the International Border/Line of Control and border fencing are credited with the success, along with coordinated intelligence by security services.

    Still, Indian opposition parties blame intelligence failures for being behind the Pulwama terror attack, in which at least 40 Indian soldiers were killed on 14 February.

    The Indian Air Force launched an air-strike on terrorist infrastructure on 26 February in Balakot inside Pakistan, in retaliation for the Pulwama attack. The following day, the air forces of the two nuclear-armed countries engaged in a dogfight, which led to a serious escalation in tensions.

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    dogfight, Pakistan, Indian Air Force (IAF), Balakot, air strikes, India, Jammu and Kashmir, terrorists
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