Sunday, June 16, 2002, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

‘More Kaluchaks’ is Pak message to ultras
Rajeev Sharma
Tribune News Service

Pallanwalan Sector (J&K), June 15
Terrorist outfits operating in India are being constantly egged on by their masters in Pakistan to “do more Kaluchaks” as such attacks would shatter the morale of the Army.

Wireless intercepts have revealed that the Pakistani masters of terrorists were elated by the May 14 incident and were goading others to do the same. “Well done”, “Keep it up”, “Do more Kaluchaks” are some of the gleeful messages that terrorists’ Pakistani masters gave them on and after May 14, Major-Gen Sudhir Sharma, GOC Pallanwalan sector, told a group of visiting reporters.

The Kaluchak incident was probably the most important watershed event for the Indian Army as for the first time terrorists sought to shatter the soldiers’ morale by targeting their families in a big way.

General Sharma said the modus operandi of the terrorists showed that they consciously and deliberately targeted Army personnel’s wives and children as the three of them went from house to house, blazing their AK-47s. They took care not to be in a house for a long duration to avoid being encircled.

They specially targeted children with the sole objective of shattering the morale of the Army officers. Children’s mothers, in most cases, flung themselves on their children to protect them and that’s how most of the women victims died.

Consider the chilling message terrorists wanted to give through Kaluchak:

* A 6-year-old girl, who was in the bathroom to get ready for school, was shot while she was on the toilet seat.

* A three-year-old was killed on a dressing table.

* Many children were killed while they were fast asleep. They were shot through the quilts.

Meanwhile, Army Generals here do not really have an answer to the crucial question: what would be the Army’s and the government’s response if another Kaluchak were to happen?

While the soldiers are seething with anger over Kaluchak and argue in private conversations that the path to permanent peace traverses through war (a sentiment shared by an overwhelmingly large percentage of the local population), General Sharma spoke about it in a language couched in diplomacy. “I have tremendous faith in the system. I’m sure we will get the right orders at the right time.”



Woman set ablaze

Srinagar, June 15
In a gruesome incident, a woman died after allegedly being set ablaze by three masked men inside a mosque at Kralpora, 10 km from here, the police said today.

The woman, identified as Neelofar, sustained 90 per cent burns and succumbed to her injuries yesterday in a hospital here a few hours later.

Neelofar had gone to visit a friend and while she was returning, she was allegedly abducted by the masked men who took her inside a mosque, sprinkled kerosene on her and set her ablaze.

Her screams alerted the neighbours who took her to hospital.

In her dying statement, said she did not know the men and also exonerated her estranged husband. PTI


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