SRINAGAR: The Union Home Minister, Rajnath Singh, on Thursday announced that the government would come up with an alternative to pellet guns within the next few days. “The expert committee will submit its report within next three or four days, following which we will come up with alternatives,” Rajnath said, addressing a joint press conference with Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti in Srinagar on Thursday.
Meanwhile, reports from New Delhi suggest that the expert committee has zeroed in on the newly developed PAVA shells, a chilli-based less-lethal munition, which temporarily incapacitates the target and renders them immobile for several minutes. “In 2010 it was being said that pellet guns were non-lethal weapons and cause least injuries. But now, we feel there should be an alternative,” Rajnath Singh said. The minister also asserted that the government was ready to talk to everybody under the ambit of jamhooriyat (democracy), insaniyat (humanity) and Kashmiriyat. Singh is on a two-day visit to the State to take stock of the situation. Many were killed and over 2000 people, including minors, sustained pellet injuries in the ongoing violence in Kashmir. Over a dozen people have lost their lives due to pellet injuries. “The security men have been asked to exhibit maximum restraint,” he said. “We have information that they are exhibiting restraint. Over 4,500 security personnel have been injured,” he added.