J&K Police to buy 20,000 pieces of riot-control equipment

Feb 3, 2011
In the backdrop of last year’s summer unrest in the Kashmir Valley, J&K Police has decided to buy 20,000 pieces of equipment to control riots and limit casualties of its personnel during clashes with protesters, officials said today.

“Police will soon purchase 20,000 [pieces of] protective equipment that will help avoid unnecessary causalities while maintaining law and order situation in the state,” a senior police official said.

The office of the Inspector General Police had floated a tender recently seeking supply of riot control items from authorised dealers in the country.

Among the items needed include 10,000 cane shields that would protect police personnel from brick batting and stone pelting during riots. They have also sought for 10,000 combat helmets, built with fiberglass, to protect their heads.

The three-month civil unrest in the Kashmir Valley last year saw angry mobs torching government and police properties, causing a nightmare for security personnel in the state.

Following the unrest, the state police had approached the state and Ministry of Home Affairs seeking non-lethal weapons and appropriate gear to avoid casualties on both sides.

Among other items the police has sought include body protectors, polycarbonate shields, polycarbonate lathis, helmets and visors, bullet proof bunkers, pump action guns, water canons, anti-riot rifles, rubber pellets and plastic pellets.

The Union Home Ministry in November had constituted a group under the chairmanship of the Director General of Police Kuldeep Khoda to draft a Standing Operating Procedure (SOP) for controlling mob violence across the country with least damage to life and property.

The SOP was drafted and submitted to the Union Home Ministry for implementation last month.

The move to procure non-lethal weapons comes in the backdrop of the flak faced by security forces in the state following the summer unrest which claimed many lives.

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