SRINAGAR: A top CRPF official has ruled out airlifting of paramilitary personnel to militancy-hit Kashmir to avoid travel of security convoys on Srinagar-Jammu National Highway after recent suicide car bombing.
“Airlifting of jawans to Srinagar is not an option,” IG CRPF Zulfiqar Hassan said when asked whether jawans can be airlifted to the Valley to avoid the 296-km-long Srinagar-Jammu highway, which is the only link road connecting Kashmir with rest of the country.
There have been suggestions from two former J&K chief ministers — Mehbooba Mufti and Omar Abdullah — to airlift jawans to Kashmir or use of special chartered trains for movement of security forces.
After the February 14 bombing, which killed over 40 CRPF personnel, the security agencies have revised security for convoy movements.
“Now, we don’t allow civilian vehicles to ply with security convoys. The civilian traffic is stopped during the convoy movement,” said General Officer Commanding (GoC) of Srinagar-based Army’s 15 Corps Lt Gen K J S Dhillon.
Lt Gen Dhillon said prior to February 14 suicide attack, there was no check on civil traffic during security convoy movement. “Certain restrictions are being put in place during convoy movement. We are trying to fix out modalities so that there is minimum delay in civilian movement,” the GoC said.
The CRPF and army have also set up temporary check points at different places on the highway. A security official said more security measures, including increase in presence of Road Opening Parties , have been put in place.