Troops Cut Not Possible: Kapoor
6 October 2007
Beerwah: Chief of Army Staff Lt. Gen. Deepak Kapoor said on Saturday that reduction in troops in Jammu and Kashmir was not possible as incidence of violence had increased and there was a spurt in infiltration from across the Line of Control. Lt. Gen Kapoor, on his maiden visit to the border State, visited the headquarters of the 34 Rashtriya Rifles which killed nine militants in a fierce encounter in Tangmarg early this week. He lauded the troops for their bravery and the leadership of Major K.P. Vinay Kumar and Major Dinesh Raghuraman who died in the encounter. He pinned Army Chief Commendation Cards on the chests of soldiers who played key roles in the operation. Talking to journalists, the Army Chief said: 'Till the time violence is fully brought under control and peace and normality returns to Kashmir like in other States, it may not be possible to bring down the level of troops.' He said infiltration continued on the Line of Control. 'This morning also, our troops foiled an infiltration attempt on the Line of Control by killing three militants.' Lt. Gen. Kapoor said that there was increased violence in the past three or four weeks. 'The return of normality or peace is invariably followed by some incidents of violence.' He said that a decision on troop reduction had to be taken by the Centre. 'Once the government feels that the situation is right, we will be happy to go back to our barracks.' On human rights, he said the Army wanted no such violations to take place. 'We are following the Prime Minister's instructions about zero tolerance on human rights violations.' The Army always acted quickly to punish any person found guilty on this count. 'I will ensure that no human rights violations take place in future as well.' Lt. Gen. Kapoor later reviewed the security situation in the State with top officers at the 15 Corps headquarters. He also called on Governor Lt. Gen. (retd.) S.K. Sinha and discussed the situation with him.