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PC argues CRPF case,backs ‘every word’ of CM

As the situation in the Kashmir valley became more volatile following the death of three protesters in Anantnag....

Written by Express News Service | New Delhi |
June 30, 2010 3:02:04 am

As the situation in the Kashmir valley became more volatile following the death of three protesters in Anantnag,Union Home Minister P Chidambaram on Tuesday said that there were reliable reports that “anti-national elements” were “trying to exploit the situation” and added that “some militants may also have sneaked into the Valley to trigger violence”.

He also said that he endorsed “every word” of the statement made by J&K Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on Tuesday.

“The incidents that have taken place in J&K in recent days,including today,are deeply regrettable. I am particularly saddened by the fact that lives have been lost,” Chidambaram said. “The CRPF is deployed in J&K to assist the state police. Under standard operating procedure,CRPF and the J&K Police carry out their assignments jointly. Invariably,it is the state police officer who is in charge of the deployment and performance of duties assigned to the CRPF. I am told that,as far as possible,Magistrates are also present when the security forces are deployed to control rioters and to restore law and order.”

Stating that he had reviewed the incidents in J&K since June 11,Chidambaram said that the “CRPF had to use force in self-defence” on June 25 at Chankhan Bridge,Sopore and on June 28 at Kapra Cinema Hall,Sopore.

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“On June 27 (at Muslimpeer,Sopore) the CRPF had to use force on stone-pelters. In the other incidents,the CRPF and the J&K police had acted jointly. Whether excessive force was used during any of these incidents is a matter that will be inquired into. I may point out that since June 25,53 CRPF personnel have been injured in the two districts of Sopore and Baramulla,” he said.

Highlighting that in the June 25 incident at Chankhan Bridge,Sopore,a CRPF inspector and a CRPF jawan suffered bullet injuries,Chidambaram said,“The people of J&K must therefore reflect on the nature of the challenge faced by the security forces. Nevertheless,I have today reiterated the instructions to the CRPF to observe maximum restraint while dealing with rioters and stone pelters.”

He also joined the J&K CM in appealing to the people of the state “to respect the law and,especially,observe the curfew regulations wherever curfew is imposed”.

“I would especially appeal to parents to ensure that their children are at home when curfew is imposed. The objective of imposing curfew is to ensure that crowds do not collect and stones are not pelted. The central government will support the J&K government in its efforts,” he said.

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