J&K DGP urges youngsters to stay away from encounter sites

Encounter sites are not venues of "marriages of terrorists" to be flocked by youngsters as bullets do not differentiate between stone pelters and militants, Jammu and Kashmir police chief S P Vaid said on Thursday.

In a first, the state director general of police (DGP) took to micro-blogging site Twitter to participate in a live broadcast where he took questions directly from people ranging from issues like the Kashmir problem, Islamic State terror group, human rights violations to educated youth joining terrorists and disruption of work in educational institutions.

Asked why the rape and murder case of an eight-year-old girl in Kathua district in January was not transferred to the CBI, he said we have no objection but the police is as competent as anybody else".

If we can we fight terrorism and stone pelting, why we can't carry out the professional investigation. Our officers are on deputation with CBI, Vaid said expressing confidence in his crime branch team that investigated the case and arrested eight persons.

He termed it a misconception that only officers from Kashmir were part of the special investigation team.

The SIT had officers from all ranks and regions. A police officer is a police officer and not a Muslim, Hindu, Sikh or Christian. That is what we believe in, he said, adding that it was a misconception that no officer from Jammu area was part of the team.

Naming two of the officers, he said SSP, Jammu, Ramesh Jhalla and DSP, S Sharma, were actively involved in the case.

Some Pakistani handlers also appeared to be asking questions during the interaction.

Vaid also asserted that the gun and violence were no solution to the Kashmir problem and favoured a dialogue between the concerned parties for a peaceful resolution of the Kashmir issue.

Let every party concerned including our neighbour (Pakistan) understand that the only way out is to sit together, talk and sort out the problem, he said.

The DGP reiterated his appeal to the youth not to come close to encounter sites.

Let me tell you that no citizen of India would like any civilian killing. We have been repeatedly requesting people not to come near the encounter sites," he said.

He said when bullets fly, whether from the militants, army, paramilitary forces or the police's side, they do it in a trajectory.

"They will not look for a chest of a particular person; it can hit anybody. It is not advisable to come near the encounter sites, he said adding that it pained him and the forces most if a civilian died.

"Marriage of the militants is not going on that these boys are coming near the encounter sites", he said.

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