Centre may consider pulling back troops from J&K, revoke AFSPA: Home Minister Amit Shah

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New Delhi: Union Home Minister Amit Shah said on Tuesday that the Centre will consider revoking the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA) in Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) and may also plan to pull back armed forces from the Union Territory.

‘Centre has plans to pull back troops’

“We have plans to pull back troops and leave law and order to the Jammu and Kashmir Police alone. Earlier, the J&K police was not trusted but today they are leading the operations,” he said during an interview with JK Media Group, as per news agency PTI.

Speaking about AFSPA in the Union Territory, he said, “We will also think of revoking AFSPA. The AFSPA gives the armed forces personnel, operating in the disturbed areas, sweeping powers to search, arrest and to open fire if they deem it necessary for the maintenance of public order.”

Several organisations and individuals in Jammu and Kashmir and north-east have demanded the revocation of AFSPA time and again. The minister had earlier stated that while AFSPA has been removed from 70 per cent areas of north east states, it continues to remain enforced in J&K.

He said that elections in the Union Territory will be held before September. “Enshrining democracy in J&K is Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s promise and it will be fulfilled. However, this democracy will not be confined to three families alone and will be a people’s democracy,” he added.

Centre banned 12 groups from UT: Amit Shah

Shah pointed out that the Centre recently banned 12 organisations from the Union Territory for their involvement in terror activities. It also designated 36 individuals as terrorists, and registered over 22 cases to stop terror finance in the region.

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