Two separate drones were spotted over Ratnuchak-Kaluchak military area in Jammu late night on Sunday by alert troops who fired on them and forced them to fly away from the sensitive area, the Army has said.

“Immediately, a high alert was sounded and quick reaction teams fired on them. Both the drones flew away,” a Jammu based defence spokesperson said. A major threat was thwarted by alertness and proactive approach of troops, he said. The armed forces were out on a high alert and the search operation was under progress. The first drone activity was reported around 11:45 pm and the next at 2:40 am.

The two incidents have triggered security alert across the UT. Sensitive installations including the airports in Jammu, Srinagar and Awantipora have been put on high alert. Police in Jammu as well as in Srinagar conducted high-level meetings to review the security in the UT.

For the past several months, J&K police have said that drones have been used to drop arms from across the border. “The attack (on the Jammu Air Force station) was of low intensity but the target is big and it is definitely rookie start of a new phase in use of technology in attacks in J&K,” a senior army official said. A police official said that two suspects have been detained in connection with the IAF station attack.

The police has begun studying the use of drones by civilians for personal, promotional or tourism projects. Even though drone users have to get a general permission from tourist department or police department they may need special permission for specific locations. “We are closely monitoring the drone footages uploaded on social media as it is critical from the security point of view. We have several sensitive installations here,” a senior police official said.

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