Apprehensions of “hybrid militancy” soars as J&K police arrests militants with no previous records

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hybrid militancy
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In a startling development, Jammu and Kashmir police have apprehended a previously non-radicalized youth, Aadil Manzoor Langoo, for his alleged involvement in the heinous killing of two non-local migrant workers last week. The incident has brought attention to the growing concern of “hybrid militants,” individuals who disguise themselves as civilians to carry out violent activities.

The arrested individual, a resident of Srinagar, is accused of being part of the February 7 attack that claimed the lives of Amritpal Singh and Rohit Masi, marking the first militant assault on non-locals this year. Aadil Manzoor Langoo, who had no prior militancy background, is believed to have been radicalized through online channels by handlers based in Pakistan. Authorities have confiscated the pistol allegedly used in the commission of the crime.

Addressing the media in Srinagar, additional director-general of police, Vijay Kumar, revealed, “If you dig Aadil Manzoor’s background, he has no previous (militancy) background, nor his family. He was motivated and radicalized through social media.” The term “hybrid militants” gained prominence after the 2019 abrogation of Jammu and Kashmir’s special status. Despite a decrease in the number of known militants in recent months, militancy-related killings persist, underscoring the challenges faced by security forces.

ADGP appeals to parents

Kumar issued a special appeal to parents and teachers, urging them to keep a vigilant eye on their children and report any noticeable behavioural changes to the police. He emphasized the difficulty in identifying such individuals in today’s digital age, stating, “The families of hybrid militants have no clue about their activities. A third person does not know. It only surfaces when he commits the incident. But in today’s digital world, it is difficult for him to escape.”

Highlighting the security forces’ efforts, Kumar mentioned their success in dismantling the majority of such modules, although a few manage to evade capture. In December, authorities revealed a plot involving “hybrid militants” targeting off-duty policemen in Srinagar, following a series of attacks on police personnel enjoying leisure time with family and friends.

The recent arrest of Aadil Manzoor Langoo underscores the evolving nature of militancy in the region, prompting heightened vigilance and collaborative efforts to address the growing challenge of “hybrid militants.”

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