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De-induction of additional forces after security assessment: Adv Bhatnagar

Srinagar, Jan 30:  Advisor to Lieutenant Governor, Ravi Rai Bhatnagar said the decision about de-inducting additional forces from Jammu and Kashmir would be done after proper assessment of the ground situation.

 In an exclusive interview to The Kashmir Monitor, Bhatnagar said situation in the union territory has improved considerably and the withdrawal for additional forces will keep happening after assessing the situation.

 

“Assessment is actually a long process and such adjustments (deployment and withdrawal of forces) are being done periodically.  It entirely depends on the situation, which has seen a lot of improvement in the valley now,” Bhatnagar said.

Prior to the abrogation of Article 370 in August last year, Centre had inducted over 280 companies of Central Armed Police Force (CAPF) in the valley. CRPF formed the biggest chunk of the additional forces that were deployed in Kashmir after August 5 last year.

Later in December, Ministry of Home Affairs ordered withdrawal of 72 companies of Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF) from Jammu and Kashmir. Of the 72 companies, 24 are from the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) while 12 each are from the Border Security Force (BSF), the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP), the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) and the Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB).

A senior security officer, who wished not to be named, said that withdrawal and arrival of forces is a continuous process in Kashmir. “It is constantly happening that a particular company of forces is being replaced by another one. Still the security situation is being constantly assessed by the top brass and accordingly the decisions follow,” he said.

On the other side, advisor to the Lieutenant Governor said the government was focusing on restoring complete normalcy, which will pave way for the development of the union territory.

 “The objective of the administration is very clear to have peace and tranquility in Jammu and Kashmir, which ultimately will create an atmosphere for development.  New projects and the languishing ones are being taken up on priority basis to ensure overall development,” he said.

Bhatnagar said forces are working in tandem to improve law and order in the valley.  “Jammu and Kashmir police is working in collaboration with other agencies to maintain law and order and the results have been efficient in the valley,” he said.