Authorities on Thursday asked the public in Kashmir to stay away from places where encounters occur between security forces and militants and decided to impose prohibitory orders in the radius of 3 kms from such sites in three districts. The decision came a day after Army Chief Gen Bipin Rawat warned of tough action against those hampering counter-insurgency operations.
"District Administrations of Srinagar, Budgam and Shopian advised people not to move towards or assemble near the places where encounters take place between security forces and militants to avoid loss and injuries to precious human lives," an official spokesman said.
"Prohibitory restrictions have been imposed within the radius of three kilometers from the site of any counter-insurgency operation in these districts," the spokesman added. However the restrictions shall not apply to the movement of ambulances, medical, paramedical staff and government employees, he said.
The decision came a day after the Army Chief said the civilians who indulge in stone pelting during counter-insurgency operations in Kashmir would be treated as anti-nationals and dealt with accordingly. Gen Rawat's warning came in the wake of an incident in Bandipora on Tuesday where the soldiers faced heavy stone-pelting when they were about to launch an operation against militants holed up in a house.
Alerted by the stone-pelters, the militants got an opportunity to hurl hand grenades and empty a few magazines of AK-rifles into the advancing troopers, leaving three jawansdead and injuring some others, including a Commanding Officerof CRPF. It has often been noticed that some locals stage protests and pelt stones on security forces whenever any operation is undertaken to take on militants in Kashmir.