AFSPA shadow on Jammu Unified Command meet
The Army is expected to strongly oppose withdrawal of the AFSPA from certain parts of J&K at the Unified Command meeting with paramilitary forces, police and government officials here Nov 9, military sources say.
Jammu: The Army is expected to strongly oppose withdrawal of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) from certain parts of Jammu and Kashmir at the Unified Command meeting with paramilitary forces, police and government officials here Nov 9, military sources say.
But the National Conference, which is in power in alliance with the Congress in the state, is expected to press for its withdrawal at the meet.
Lt. Gen. KT Parnaik , general officer commanding in chief of the Northern Command, Thursday opposed the withdrawal of AFSPA from some of the peaceful areas of the state.
He told reporters at Teetwal, along the Line of Control: "The situation isn`t conducive for revocation of AFSPA and there is no question that the Act will go this time. Without the AFSPA, the Army will be handicapped."
This is a sort of guideline that he and two corps commanders -- whose troops guard the borders with Pakistan and Pakistan-administered Kashmir and are actively engaged in anti-insurgency operations -- will articulate at the Unified Command meeting, Army sources said.
Gen. Parnaik said: "If the AFSPA is removed from certain areas, it will become difficult for the Army to operate in the manner we operate now."
"Though the situation in the state has improved and the summer of 2011 remained peaceful, time isn`t ripe for revocation of the AFSPA. There is no guarantee the situation will remain the same next year," he said and apprehended that if the AFSPA was revoked from certain areas, militants will exploit the situation.
On the other hand, Chief Minister Omar Abdullah in an interview with a news channel early this week had declared that he would go ahead with the recall of AFSPA from some areas.
He had first made this statement on Oct 21 when he said the AFSPA would be removed from some areas within days.
The law gives sweeping powers to the armed forces and is blamed for human rights violations.