Gilgit, July 5: The Gilgit-Baltistan govt has decided to launch a targeted operation in the remote Darel Valley and the adjacent Tangir Valley within 48 to 72 hours. This was stated by Naveed, Superintendent of Police (SP) Diamer, at a press conference in Chilas, Diamr’s district headquarters.
Meanwhile, a search operation is underway in Darel Valley under the leadership of SP Jahangir, who is accompanied, reportedly, by around 300 men of the police forces, aided by intelligence officials and paramilitary forces.
There are reports that cases are being registered against the unidentified attackers under the recently passed controversial Protection of Pakistan (PPO) law which gives sweeping powers to police, paramilitary and armed forces.
The police officials – six of them were present inside the police station – who were tied with ropes last night have, reportedly, said that the attackers were speaking Urdu and Pashtu, as well as Shina, the region’s local language. There are contradicting reports about the number of attackers. However, the cases are to be registered against 35 unknown attackers.
The Home Secretary of Gilgit-Baltistan has negated the reports that the attackers freed prisoners from the police station. He, instead, said that they tied up the policemen and took their weapons, communication gadgets, uniforms and ammunition. According to reports, the attackers took away around 2000 bullets, half a dozen AK-47 guns, G-3 semi-automatic rifles and several pistols. He vowed to bring the culprits to justice.
Local journalists have said that there’s shortage of police force in Diamer, despite of its volatile law and order situation.
Diamer is a vast district with difficult to reach valleys which shares border with the Kohistan district of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa. There have been speculations about the infiltration of militants from KPK in the region. However, SP Diamer has said that there’s evidence of locals’ involvement in the incident.
Security is, meanwhile, being beefed up across the region to avert any untoward incident, as informed by officials.
The incident is being seen as a serious breach of security and a stark failure of the law enforcing agencies.
In the past, the assailants have used uniforms of paramilitary forces and the army, while attacking passengers buses and tourists, in or around Diamer district.