Amid chaos and panic among motorists caused by the latest police crackdown on non-J&K registered vehicles in Kashmir, Inspector General of Police Kashmir, Vijay Kumar on Tuesday associated the move with militant attacks and drug transportation in the valley wherein he said such vehicles were used.
Police have seized over 150 vehicles in the valley following a notification issued Saturday by RTO Kashmir asking the owners to register the unregistered vehicles forthwith to avoid seizure.
While the notification gave a 15-days' window to the owners for registering the vehicles with the local authorities, seizure of the vehicles by the police right away without any notice has left them high and dry.
People have appealed the authorities to provide them a window to get their vehicles registered and not to seize them instantly.
"The order was issued on Saturday, how are we supposed to get our vehicles registered in a day when there is no adequate system for it? So, it will be in the interest of people if authorities give us some time before seizing our vehicle the moment we are on the road," Asif Ali, a commuter said.
Another motorist from Ompora area of central Kashmir's Budgam district, whose car is registered on his Delhi residence, too flayed the latest move by the divisional administration in Kashmir he said is bound to complicate things rather than simplifying them.
"My car is registered with the Delhi authorities. Now after the latest crackdown by the police, I will have to register the car afresh back in Delhi as I am planning to shift there again," he said.
IGP Kumar, while addressing the media on the sidelines of the wreath laying ceremony at STC Humhama of a CRPF trooper killed in the recent militant attack in Lawaypora on Srinagar outskirts, attributed the crackdown to the vehicles being used in militant attacks.
"Whether it is about Parimpora or Lawaypora incidents (attacks), or drug cases, it is these unregistered vehicles (used in the attacks), so we are seizing them. That's why RTO Kashmir came up with the circular," Kumar told Greater Kashmir.
While the vehicles were supposed to register within six months' window period, the IGP said many of them had not completed the process for over a year. Kumar asked the vehicle owners for their cooperation.
Transport Commissioner, Pradeep Kumar said that the move comes in the wake of a "surge in non-J&K registered vehicles in Kashmir after COVID-19".
(With inputs by Khan Mudasir)