Udhampur: Failing to engineer infiltration of militants from across the LoC, Pakistani agencies have resorted to social media to radicalise Kashmiri youths, with 40 of them joining militancy since January, an Army commander said on Monday.”Pakistan has been continuing with its efforts to show this (terrorism) as an indigenous movement. Today, they feel absolutely starved because of the very effective counter-infiltration grid of the Indian Army,” General Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Northern Command, Lieutenant General Ranbir Singh said. Also Read – Personal life needs to be respected: Cong on reports of Rahul’s visit abroadLocal recruitment still remains a matter of concern, but youths are realising that “we do not want to become fodder for Pakistani agencies”, he said. “Successful infiltration from across the Line of Control (LoC) is virtually becoming very difficult,” Singh said while replying to a question on recruitment by militant outfits in Kashmir. “Therefore, for them (Pakistan) to continue with this militancy, they want that the local content should be increased,” he said. Also Read – Firms staying closed 10 days a month due to recession, govt doing nothing: Priyanka Gandhi”Local recruitment remains a matter of concern for all of us. Last year, 217 local youths had taken to militancy. This year, number has significantly reduced. As on date, there are only 40 youth who have picked up arms,” the Army commander said. The Army said a large number of misguided youths returned to mainstream society because of its outreach programmes to connect with families and teachers. Since 2016, there has been a constant rise in the number of youths joining militancy, as per official data. In 2015, 66 youths joined militancy in Kashmir and 53 in 2014. In 2017, 126 locals had joined militant ranks, it said. South Kashmir districts Pulwama, Shopian, Kulgam and Anantnag have become a breeding ground for militants with many youths joining their rank and file, it said. Outfits like the Hizbul Mujahideen and the Lashker-e- Taiba find more recruits. The data said out of the 217 recruits in 2018, 154 hailed from south Kashmir. The highest, 69, was from Pulwama.