MHA plans to recruit local youths from 'terror-hit' villages in Jammu as SPOs

According to officials, these SPOs will provide additional support to the regular security forces in anti-terror operations as they will be locals having acquaintance of the people in the selected villages.
Jammu and Kashmir Police.
Jammu and Kashmir Police. (Photo | PTI)

NEW DELHI: The Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has identified 140 villages in the terror-hit districts of the Jammu region including Poonch, Doda, Rajouri, Reasi and Udhampur for the recruitment of Special Police Officers (SPOs) on the lines of what is being done in the Kashmir Valley, officials said on Thursday.

Giving details of the number of villages selected from each of the five districts, the officials said that out of 140 of them 47 are in Poonch, 27 in Doda, and 22 in Rajouri, Reasi, and Udhampur districts of the Jammu region.

The recruitment would be based on the physical tests of the aspirants, and they would be taken on board in July itself, the officials said, adding that such SPOs would be paid an honorarium of Rs 6,000 per month by the district police and would also be given weapons training.

With these SPOs on board, they will provide additional support to the regular security forces in anti-terror operations as they will be locals having acquaintance of the people in the selected villages, the officials said.

All the selected villages in the five districts - Rajouri, Poonch, Udhampur, Reasi, and Doda- have witnessed terror attacks in the recent past.

Doda district has seen twin terror-linked incidents in Chatargalla and Gandoh in June, followed by an encounter in which three Jaish-e-Mohammad terrorists were killed by Jammu and Kashmir Police along with the Indian Army in the Gandoh area.

Reasi district saw a deadly terror attack on June 9, in which nine pilgrims were killed and over 40 injured when terrorists attacked a bus carrying pilgrims to Shiv Khori Shrine.

Udhampur witnessed one terror attack in April when a Village Defence Group (VDG) member was killed by terrorists in the upper reaches of Basantgarh.

Rajouri and Poonch have witnessed multiple terror attacks in the last two years in which more than 35 civilians and security forces have been killed.

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