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INTERVIEW
 
‘Should AFSPA be Revoked, our Responsibilities Will Increase’
-Inspector General of Police, Kashmir, S.M. Sahai   

What is your view on the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act? Is the time right to start its gradual revocation?


Inspector General of Police, Kashmir, S.M. Sahai 
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The AFSPA was imposed in the state under a certain situation. Before the rollback is considered we have to do an assessment of that overall situation. As far as we are concerned, we fully understand that it is the prerogative of the government, because they will take the decision after reviewing the situation in its entirety. But should this happen, our responsibilities will increase.

Is Kashmir police prepared to take on this responsibility?

As I said, it is the government’s prerogative to take the decision. I think AFSPA is a complicated issue. One has to appreciate that there is also a question of perception when it comes to the Act.

Were the Rashtriya Rifles to go completely, would Jammu and Kashmir Police be able to take on the entire responsibility or would you need more CRPF and BSF?

Some force levels will have to be maintained regardless of the colour.

How would you assess the situation in the state today, both in terms of militancy as well as law and order?

While I am very upbeat about the situation,I will be cautious in taking any decisions at the
 moment. Remember, 2010 is not very far behind us.All the forces deployed in the state had played a very useful and positive role in that situation. I cannot in any way demean the contribution made by any force. But yes, all indications show that we are in for better times.

In the coming months, where will your focus be, on counter-militancy operations or law and order?

Law and order situations are motivated, organised, controlled and financed by the same elements. In Kashmir, law and order disruptions are not very different from militancy. Hence, when we make our plans or strategies we take this entire infrastructure into account.
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