September 2016 News

Nothing Effective About PAVA Shells

12 September 2016
The Tribune (Chandigarh)
Ishfaq Tantry

Srinagar: With newly inducted PAVA shells already in use across a majority of districts in Kashmir, the police have received negative feedback from the field about effectiveness of this new non-lethal weapon. As per feedback received from contingents of police engaged in the law and order situation in many districts of Kashmir, PAVA shells have been found as good as teargas shells and not effective as far as crowd control is concerned, an official said. Faced with criticism over the use of pellet guns, which have caused nearly 500 eye-related injuries and other bodily injuries, the Centre had zeroed in on PAVA shells, chilli-based non-lethal munition, as an alternative. After field trials, the use of PAVA shells as an alternative to pellet guns was approved by the Home Ministry on September 2. Since then, PAVA shells had been distributed among J&K Police and CRPF men engaged in quelling streets protests across Kashmir. 'Since approval, PAVA shells have been used in a majority of Kashmir districts. Subsequently, the opinion of all concerned was sought with regard to effectiveness of the newly inducted non-lethal weapon,' the officer said. However, the opinion was found to be against its use on many counts, he added.