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DATE=6/22/99 TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT NUMBER=2-250952 TITLE=INDIA / KASHMIR (L ONLY) BYLINE=ANJANA PASRICHA DATELINE=NEW DELHI CONTENT= VOICED AT: INTRO: INDIAN TROOPS ARE LAUNCHING A MASSIVE OFFENSIVE AGAINST ARMED INTRUDERS ON A STRATEGIC MOUNTAIN RIDGE IN INDIAN KASHMIR. ANJANA PASRICHA REPORTS FROM NEW DELHI, IT IS FOUR WEEKS SINCE NEW DELHI BEGAN ITS MILITARY OFFENSIVE IN KASHMIR. SINCE THEN, THE ARMY HAS REPORTED SLOW BUT STEADY PROGRESS IN ITS OPERATION TO REMOVE THE GUERRILLAS FROM THE MOUNTAIN PEAKS. TEXT: MORE THAN 2000 INDIAN TROOPS HAVE ENCIRCLED TIGER HILLS -- A HIGH MOUNTAIN RIDGE IN KASHMIR'S DRAS REGION. DEFENSE OFFICIALS SAY THE ARMY HAS CUT OFF SUPPLY LINES TO THE GUERRILLAS AND IS HOPING, BY THIS STRATEGY, TO FORCE THEM OUT. TIGER HILLS IS ONE OF THREE MOUNTAIN PEAKS IN THE DRAS REGION THAT THE GUERRILLAS HAVE USED TO OVERLOOK FRONTLINE INDIAN ARMY POSITIONS. THE ARMY SAYS IT HAS ALREADY CLEARED THE OTHER TWO PEAKS. ARMY OFFICIALS SAY ONCE THE GUERRILLAS ARE EVICTED FROM THE HIGHEST POINTS, THEY WILL LOSE THE ADVANTAGE THEY NOW HAVE OVERLOOKING THE STRATEGIC HIGHWAY LINKING THE KASHMIRI SUMMER CAPITAL, SRINAGAR, TO THE TOWN OF LEH. IN ISLAMABAD, PAKISTAN'S MILITARY HAS ACCUSED INDIA OF RELENTLESS ASSAULTS ON ITS ARMY POSTS -- AND SAYS HOPES FOR PEACE IN THE KASHMIR REGION ARE FADING. RESPONDING TO ISLAMABAD'S ACCUSATION, INDIAN FOREIGN MINISTRY SPOKESMAN R.S. JASSAL SAYS PEACE CAN ONLY RETURN IF PAKISTAN IS WILLING TO WITHDRAW THE INTRUDERS FROM INDIAN KASHMIR. NEW DELHI ACCUSES ISLAMABAD OF SENDING SOLDIERS AND SOME AFGHAN MERCENARIES TO CAPTURE ITS TERRITORY. MR. JASSAL SAYS PEACE CAN COME TO THE REGION ONLY AFTER ALL THE INFILTRATORS LEAVE INDIAN KASHMIR. /// INSERT JASSAL ACT /// THE HOPES FOR PEACE WOULD BE VERY BRIGHT IF PAKISTAN WERE TO HEED OUR DEMANDS AND THE CALL OF THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY TO GO BACK ACROSS THE LINE OF CONTROL AND VACATE THIS AGGRESSION. /// END JASSAL ACT /// MEANWHILE, INDIA'S CHIEF ELECTION COMMISSIONER, M.S. GILL, SAYS HE DOES NOT BELIEVE GENERAL ELECTIONS IN THE COUNTRY WILL BE DELAYED DUE TO THE INDIAN ARMY'S INVOLVEMENT IN THE KASHMIR CONFLICT. INDIA IS SCHEDULED TO COMPLETE ELECTIONS BY THE FIRST WEEK OF OCTOBER. ACCORDING TO MR. GILL, HE IS CLOSELY WATCHING THE KASHMIR SITUATION AND IS CONFIDENT IT WILL BE UNDER CONTROL BY THE TIME THE COUNTRY'S HEADS FOR THE POLLS. AN EXACT ELECTIONS SCHEDULE IS STILL TO BE ANNOUNCED -- BUT IN RECENT WEEKS QUESTIONS HAVE BEEN RAISED ABOUT INDIA'S ABILITY TO CONDUCT A GENERAL ELECTION ON SCHEDULE BECAUSE OF THE ARMY'S INVOLVEMENT IN THE KASHMIR CONFLICT. PARAMILITARY FORCES ARE EXTENSIVELY USED FOR INTERNAL SECURITY DURING ELECTIONS. BUT NOW MANY OF THOSE FORCES ARE ON THE INDIA-PAKISTAN BORDER. (SIGNED) NEB/AP/KL 22-Jun-99 10:02 AM EDT (1402 UTC) NNNN Source: Voice of America .