Srinagar:Unveiling what he called “operation all-out”, J&K’s director general of police SP Vaid on Thursday said youth who have picked up gun have only two options—either to return to their homes or get killed in gunfights. He also said the basic motive of the operation was to “end the menace of militancy and let peace prevail in Kashmir.”
Talking to reporters on the sidelines of a ‘police durbar’ here, Vaid said the “operation all-out has been started to eradicate the menace of violence and militancy and ensure peace prevails in Kashmir as soon as possible.”
“The basic motive is to let there be a peaceful environment so that business picks up, school children go to their schools without fear and tourism witnesses a boom,” he said.
The youth who have picked up arms have a choice to return and live a peaceful life again with their families or get killed in gunfights, he said. “The youth wielding gun and opening fire at government forces will be responded in the same way.”
Replying to a query on continued civilian casualties at gunfight sites, the DGP said efforts are on to minimise such deaths. “We have minimised it. Yesterday, a huge group of youth attacked a forces’ camp which resulted in death of a youth. In such a situation, what can you expect,” he said. “Otherwise, we have directed our men to keep pellets as their last resort.”
He alleged that youth are being “instigated” to stage protests at gunfight sites.
Vaid said a series of steps have been taken to prevent weapon-snatching incidents.
“A constable foiled a bid in Charar-e-Sharief when three men tried to take away his weapon. We have taken a lot of measures which I won’t disclose to media,” he said.
So far, 70 rifle-snatching incidents have taken place in Kashmir areas this year.
On Al-Qaeda presence in Kashmir, the J&K police chief said: “Al-Qaeda is a thought and it seems that Zakir Musa is under this influence. This thought, however, is inimical to Kashmir’s culture and is destined to get isolated. So far there is no evidence of Al-Qaeda’s advent in Kashmir.”
About preparations for upcoming August 15, Vaid said people should join the official functions without any panic.
“We are ready to deal with any situation,” he said.