Strictly adhere to SOP to avert civilian killings: MHA

KT NEWS SERVICE. Dated: 12/18/2018 12:17:31 PM

SRINAGAR, Dec 17: The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has directed forces to deal carefully with the situation in Kashmir, especially during anti-militancy operations and protests to avert civilian killings and collateral damage.
A Srinagar based news agency quoting one of the top officials of the MHA preferring anonymity stated that the top police and other security officials were directed to ensure that the forces at the site of encounters and protests, “handle the situation very carefully to avoid civilian casualties and collateral damage.” “All security agencies have to strictly adhere to the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) formulated for anti-militancy operations and dealing with protests,” the MHA has directed.
The agency further quoted its sources saying that the MHA was informed by the top brass of the security forces in J&K that it was unprecedented situation in Pulwama where hundreds of people assembled at the encounter site and pelted stones on the security forces who had engaged a group of militants in an encounter.
The report quoting sources said that the MHA was concerned over the presence of civilians at the encounter sites despite being repeatedly asked not to do so.
However, the MHA was satisfied with number of killings of the militants by security forces and thwarting of infiltration attempts by the troops along the LoC. MHA was watching Kashmir situation very closely and gathered all information of security situation prevailing in Valley from the officers of police, CRPF and other agencies, said report further quoting its sources.
Top security officers were asked to give their views on the ground situation, especially the security situation in Kashmir including counter-insurgency operations and infiltrations from across the border.
Seven civilians including three militants and one army Jawan were killed after an encounter in South Kashmir’s Pulwama district on Saturday. More than 15 people were also injured after security forces allegedly opened fire at the protesters near the site of the encounter.



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