India orders withdrawal of 10,000 troops from J&K

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JAMMU: The Indian Home Ministry has ordered withdrawal of 100 paramilitary companies totalling 10,000 troops from the Union Territory and shift them to their base locations amid reports that some of them could be later moved to Bihar which is due to go to polls in next couple of months.

This is the first major withdrawal of the paramilitary personnel from Jammu and Kashmir after large number of additional security forces were deployed in July ahead of August 5, 2019 Central decisions including abrogation of Articles 370 and 35-A and bifurcation of erstwhile State into two Union Territories.
Official sources told the Excelsior that 40 companies of Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) have been ordered to shift from Jammu and Kashmir to their base locations of pre-August deployment. Other paramilitary companies which have been asked to leave the Union Territory include 20 each from Border Security Force (BSF), Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) and Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB).
The companies of Central Armed Police Forces (CAPFs) are being withdrawn from both divisions of Jammu and Kashmir, sources said, adding the Union Ministry of Home Affairs has taken the decision of biggest de-induction of paramilitary forces from the Union Territory based on detailed assessment of situation especially in the Valley where law and order remained fully under control post August-5, 2019 with no major protests reported from anywhere.
However, the CRPF is also engaged in anti-militancy operations along with Army and Jammu and Kashmir Police in Kashmir.
In May this year, the Union Ministry of Home Affairs had withdrawn 10 paramilitary companies from the Union Territory while 72 companies were moved out of J&K in December last year i.e. within five months after their deployment as no law and order problem was reported from the Union Territory following scrapping of special status of J&K.
The Home Ministry has regularly been reviewing the situation in Jammu and Kashmir after it became the Union Territory as there is no elected Government here.
“Situation in Jammu and Kashmir is reviewed regularly by the Ministry of Home Affairs and based on assessment major de-congestion decision has been taken,” sources said, adding the withdrawal process will start immediately.