Army firm against revocation of AFSPA

Senior officers communicate their views with Omar Abdullah

According to sources, the views of the Army were communicated to the chief minister by senior army officers during a meeting of unified headquarters (Uhq) in Jammu.

Uhq is a joint platform of police and various security and intelligence agencies operating in the state with Omar as it chairman.

The chief minister told Uhq meeting that the state government intends to revoke Afspa, which gives unbridled powers to the security forces.

He said the state government was holding consultations with central government at various levels in this connection. Omar Abdullah also stated that there was no need for continuation of Afspa in the areas, where situation has normalised.

However, the army officers observed that in view of the terror related infrastructure still existing in PoK and Pakistan and thousands of trained militants waiting for infiltration into Kashmir, revoking Afspa would be an unwise decision. BSF officers also expressed similar views. However, Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) and Jammu&Kashmir police officers viewed that time was ripe for revocation of the act from some areas in J&K.

Omar’s stand
Earlier, addressing a press conference chief minister defended his move for partial withdrawal of Afspa. He said there was no need for providing protection to army through Afspa in the areas, where there is no militancy.

 “My governments endeavour is to remove Afspa from those areas where there is no need of army to work. I have never said that we should remove Afspa from Baramulla, Sopore and Kupwara areas,” he said.

“We should not wait for the last gun to fall silent. We need to take some bold decisions to restore the faith of the people in the peace process,” Omar Abdullah added.

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