April 2017 News

Avoid Collateral Damage During Operations: Mehbooba Tells Security Forces

25 April 2017
The Hindu
Peerzada Ashiq

Srinagar: Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti on Tuesday asked the security forces to 'avoid collateral damage' during anti-militancy operations in J&K. She also urged the security forces to hold special counselling sessions for the youth in the State to 'allay their apprehensions and misgivings about the system.' Chairing a meeting of Unified Headquarters, a body represented by all security wings active in the State, in Srinagar's SKICC, Ms. Mufti called for 'improving the public-security force interface'. Ms. Mufti's thrust to improve public-security forces' relations come in the wake of viral videos showing security personnel involved in rights violations against students and civilians in Kashmir, especially during the bypolls in Srinagar. She said counselling sessions 'will help in allaying apprehensions and misgivings about the system among youth... It would also give the security agencies a chance to reach out to people through community policing,' she added. Back in Srinagar after meeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi on Monday, the Chief Minister also directed the security agencies 'to exercise restraint while dealing with provocative situations and avoid as well as minimize all collateral damage while conducting operations' against militants. 'Wherever restraint was exercised, it helped in maintaining peace and order. The youth unfortunately is caught in the cycle of misinformation. They ought to be won over with a healing touch,' said Ms. Mufti. She said that parents of youth be taken into confidence in case of any complaint. On the spate of cow vigilantism in Jammu, Ms. Mufti asked the security agencies to ensure that inter-community harmony among various sections of society. 'Culprits be brought to justice if found spreading hatred against a section of society,' she said. The J&K government on Tuesday decided to suspend the classes work at Government Girls Higher Secondary School (HSS), Kothi Bagh and Sri Pratap Higher Secondary School, near here, on April 26.