Bhuvesh Chaudhary, CRPF spokesman in Srinagar, told leading news website that the paramilitary personnel deployed in Valley are being given additional training on how to tackle and deal with the law and order situation.
“The CRPF men are being trained in use of pellet and pava shell guns. They are being trained in the handling of pellet guns, pava shell guns and other non-lethal weapons,” he said.
He said now the emphasis is being given on training the personnel and officials in dealing with the law and order situation. “After completing their training, they are being deployed in the Valley to help maintain law and order,” the CRPF spokesman said.
Kashmir witnessed major law and order problems last year during over five month long unrest triggered by killing of 21-year Burhan Wani in an encounter with security forces in South Kashmir’s Kokernag area on July 8, 2016. During the unrest period, there were daily clashes between stone pelting youth and security personnel in all 10 district of the Valley.
According to official sources, 2371 law and order incidents took place in five months of unrest in Valley after Burhan’s killing. “July witnessed 820 law and order incidents followed by 747 in August, 535 in September, 179 in October and 73 in November.”
On use of pellet guns, the CRPF spokesman said the paramilitary personnel have to follow the security drill.
“It is not that they have to use pellets in every situation. It depends on the situation and the requirements to deal with the trouble,” he said.
Chaudhary said if the situation becomes very grave and there is threat to the life of the CRPF personnel and threat to public property, then the CRPF men have no option but to use the pellet guns.
The mainstream opposition parties, separatist groups and human rights organizations have been demanding ban on use of pellet guns, which left over a dozen people dead and 8000 other injured. Most of the injured had sustained pellets in eyes and half a dozen people have lost eyesight in both eyes.
Asked whether all additional CRPF companies brought to Valley last year to deal with the situation during the unrest have been withdrawn, Chaudhary said all the additional companies have been withdrawn.
The withdrawal of additional CRPF companies began in December last year after improvement in the situation in the Valley.
The authorities had brought 102 additional companies of CRPF and other paramilitary forces to Kashmir last year to maintain law and order and deal with the stone pelters during the five-month long unrest triggered by killing Burhan Wani.
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