MHA asks JK Govt to review separatists’ security
SHABIR IBN YUSUF
Srinagar, Jan 31: The Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has asked the Jammu and Kashmir Government to go for a ‘detailed review’ of the security of separatist leaders in Kashmir. The Government has also been asked to offer security to the separatist leaders who have denied the cover so far.
While most of the separatist leaders have been provided with lower-rung security cover, some of the important have been given the Z-security in 2004 after they started a dialogue with the Government of India over Kashmir issue. “A directive has been sent to the J&K Home Department in this respect. We have told them to take a detailed review of security of separatist leaders in the Valley,” a top MHA official, who wished not to be named, told Greater Kashmir.
He said they are hopeful that the security review would be taken in minimum possible time. “The J&K Government is having its own mechanism of reviewing the security of important persons. We too will share our inputs,” the official said.
He said the review of security would be based on ‘threat perception assessment’. “Every person is guarded on the threat perception assessment. The Government will assess that. In case, and if necessary, more security personnel would be deployed as static guards to the leaders,” he said.
The MHA official said they were yet to decide whether paramilitary forces would be deployed for security of separatist leaders or not. “For that matter, a leader has to give in writing that he/she feels insecure and needs the paramilitary security cover,” he said.
The official refused to divulge the reasons behind the MHA’s fresh move. “We have to protect the protected persons. This is a part of policy and nothing else,” he said.
He added: “There are some separatist leaders in J&K who have denied the security cover so far. We will make a fresh offer to them and in case they accept it, adequate security cover would be provided to them.”
Secretary State Home Department, Suresh Kumar told Greater Kashmir that the MHA directive “might be in transit.” “We are yet to receive it. Let us wait,” he said.
Home Department records maintain that the Center in 2004 decided to give ‘Z’ category security to all Hurriyat leaders after they decided to hold parleys with the Centre on Kashmir issue.
While all leaders have accepted the security cover, the former Hurriyat chairman Abdul Gani Bhat was reluctant to accept a bullet-proof car. He has earlier been given a personal security officer and a static guard at his residence.
Bilal Ghani Lone and Sajjad Lone have been put under a tight security cover since 2002 following the assassination of their father, Abdul Gani Lone, in the same year. The static guard strength at their residence had also been increased, the records reveal.
Hurriyat Conference (M) Chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq already has a ‘Z’ category security cover.
Senior Superintendent of Police (Security), Kashmir, denied divulging any details regarding the security of separatist leaders.
Lastupdate on : Thu, 31 Jan 2013 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Thu, 31 Jan 2013 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Fri, 1 Feb 2013 00:00:00 IST
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