Vohra directs security forces to avoid collateral damage

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Srinagar, Feb 16 (IANS) Jammu and Kashmir Governor N.N.Vohra on Tuesday directed security agencies to avoid collateral damage during anti-militancy operations in the valley.

Vohra, who flew here this afternoon to review the overall security situation in the valley, chaired a high-level meeting in the civil secretariat which was attended by top civil, army, paramilitary, police and intelligence officers, an official statement said.

He directed that amaximum restraint should be exercised to minimize colateral damage while conducting operations against militants, and asked the state director general of police “to hold urgent discussions with the security forces to evolve a fully agreed standard drill to be followed before and post-operations against the militants”.

Vohra stressed the need for enforcing strict pre-emptive measures, including imposition of reasonable restrictions, as part of the approach to be followed in minimizing inconvenience to the people at large and ensure that gunfights with militants do not result in injury or any unfortunate killing of innocent civilians.

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His directive came a day after two civilians were killed and several others wounded in alleged security force firing during a militant-security force gunfight in Pulwama district.

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