stone pelting, clashes
 [Representational Image]Reuters

Incidents of stone-pelting in Jammu and Kashmir have reduced by half this year because of the effective action taken by the security forces and probe agencies against the separatists and others, said the CRPF Director General Rajeev Rai Bhatnagar on Wednesday.

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Bhatnagar said that stone pelting in the Kashmir valley has come down to less than half of the incidents of 2016 as compared to last year. In 2015 there were a total of 1,590 stone pelting incidents whereas, in 2016 there were only 424 such incidents recorded.

Why the drop?

According to Bhatnagar, the stone pelting incidents have fallen due to several reasons. New standard operating procedures, a new strategy to deal with the mob, action taken by other agencies like NIA against the organisers of such incidents and joint operation by forces are few of the reasons leading to fewer stone pelting incidents.

"We have not allowed violent mobs in J&K to disrupt operations," Bhatnagar was quoted as saying by Times of India.

The English daily also said that as many as 75 militants have been killed by CRPF this year in Kashmir while 252 have been apprehended and 118 arms have been recovered.

"Our assessment is that situation in the Kashmir Valley has improved," he said. He also added that the CRPF was coordinating with the NIA in its crackdown against separatists and their operatives.

Kashmir stone pelting
Stone pelting in Kashmir.Reuters

"We have not allowed violent mobs to interfere in the conduct of anti-militancy operations. There is a very close coordination between the J&K Police, the CRPF and the Army," said the CRPF DG.

New strategies and lethal weapons

He also pointed out that stone throwing incidents have also come down owing to reasons like re-positioning of troops and standard operating procedures. New strategies like stink bomb are also expected to be implemented.

Srinagar Riot Indian Security Force standing by with tear gas
Srinagar Riot Indian Security Force standing by with tear gasWikimedia Commons

"With the use of less lethal weapons (pellet guns and pump action guns) we're able to minimise injuries to troops and also to the mob," added the CRPF top boss.

Besides stressing on the factor that the terror activities have come down in the valley, the CRPF DG also revealed that there were only a few security personnel injured this year.

  • Stone pelters
    In picture: Kashmiri protestors throw stones towards Indian government forces in clashes during a protest against the death of civilians in Kashmir's ongoing summer unrest, in Srinagar on October 7, 2016.TAUSEEF MUSTAFA/AFP/Getty Images
  • Stone pelting jammu and kashmir
    Kashmiri protesters hold a banner bearing the acronym ISJK, which stands for Islamic State and Jammu Kashmir, amid smoke of tear gas fired by Indian police during a protest in Srinagar, November 20, 2015.Reuters

"The number of our personnel injured has also come down to one-third of what was the picture last year, said Bhatnagar.