Reiterating the police’s commitment to ensure safety and security of panchs and sarpanchs in the state, Director General of Police, Ashok Prasad said the police was analyzing the threat perception to the panchayat members at different levels. However, he said the exercise being a lengthy one will take some time and could not be done overnight.
“We are assessing the situation in different areas at various levels to frame a strategy for ensuring security to panchs and sarpanchs. It is a long process and would take some time to complete the assessment based on sensitivity of different areas”, the DGP said while talking to KNS on Friday.
Ruling out the possibility of providing individual security to nearly 35 thousand panchayat members, Prasad said the police investigations in the past have pointed a direct militant hand in killings of the grass root representatives.
“Providing security to each and every panch and sarpanch is not possible for the police however, wherever we feel there is threat to certain individuals, we will take steps to ensure their safety”, he added.
“Our investigations have revealed that militants carried out attacks on panchs and sarpanchs like in Kulgam and Sopore etc. as they are soft targets. We are keeping a close vigil on their movement since they keep changing their locations. We are also identifying the areas which are more sensitive and assessment is being done at district levels also”, the DGP said.
The DGP said that the state police and security establishment were prepared for ensuring smooth republic day celebrations on January 2. “There is no threat perception and all preparations are in place to ensure an incident free Republic day”.
On the issue of issuing passport to Hurriyat (G) Chairman, Syed Ali Geelani, Prasad said issuing passport was not the job of state police. “It is the state and central government which decide on such matters and it is not our job”.
Regarding reports of the government’s plans to provide security to all the Hurriyat (M) leaders, the DGP expressed ignorance over the matter.