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New anti-riot force for Jammu Kashmir

Jammu: Director-General Police, Kuldip Khoda, informed that a new anti-riot force will soon be in action to deal with mobs. Commending police for fighting militancy, he said that 2010 was the most challenging period in maintaining law and order.

He apprised that the Ministry of Home Affairs was in the process of implementing a newly-drawn Standing Operative Procedure (SOP) for controlling mob violence with the use of non-lethal weapons so as to minimise damage to life and property. A team of high officers including himself and ADGP of Andhra and UP, IGs of Rapid Action Force, Central Reserve Force and Intelligence Bureau has developed the draft. “SOP is being adopted at the national level.” New non-lethal weaponry is being developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation.

Laser guns, pump action guns and plastic pellets “will reduce civilian causalities and help achieve better control of mob violence, he informed. Five new battalions which are undergoing training and are equipped with a different body gear will be assigned with the job of mob control in the J&K region. They will be donning an identifiable uniform called “American Para.”

Talking about modernization of police forces he informed that it is being done at all levels and there was now a significant decline in militancy. Highlighting that 22 militant commanders were killed in the state last year, he added, “…. we are not going to be complacent and our vigil will continue.” He said that militancy was completely absent in Jammu, Samba and Reasi districts while it was on a fast decline in Kishtwar, Ramban, Doda and Rajouri districts.

This article appeared in The Milli Gazette print issue of 16-31 March 2011 on page no. 19

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