Army won't be in Srinagar for long, says Chidambaram
Expressing the hope that the army would not be required in the Kashmir Valley for too long, Home Minister P Chidambaram said today it was being deployed as a deterrent to help police and paramilitary forces maintain law and order in curfew-bound Srinagar. Curfew continues | Whats happening in Kashmir?delhi Updated: Jul 08, 2010 17:26 IST
Expressing the hope that the army would not be required in the Kashmir Valley for too long, Home Minister P Chidambaram Thursday said it was being deployed as a deterrent to help police and paramilitary forces maintain law and order in curfew-bound Srinagar.
As strict restrictions continued in many parts of the troubled valley, Chidambaram said Kashmir was peaceful barring "two very minor incidents" of violence Wednesday.
"So far today (Thursday) I have not received any reports of any incident," the home minister told reporters in New Delhi.
He said the central government had deployed the army after the request from the state government.
"The army was deployed after at the request of government of Jammu and Kashmir. I am not at liberty to disclose where it has been deployed. But I can assure that most of the places affected are still being patrolled and curfew enforced by Jammu and Kashmir Police and paramilitary forces," the minister said.
"The army was deployed to serve as a deterrent and has been kept ready in case it becomes necessary."
He said the armed force would assist the police and paramilitary forces in Srinagar "as long as it is necessary".
"And I hope it will not be necessary for too long," he said, adding that curfew should be enforced "and observed by everybody for the next two-three days".
Many parts of the valley have been under an indefinite curfew, enforced with the army's assistance, following violent protests that led to three deaths in firing by security forces Tuesday.
The minister appealed to parents in the valley to not allow their children to violate the curfew and stone security personnel.
"Our appeal to the people of Jammu and Kashmir is - observe the curfew, stay indoors. It is important that people don't come into the streets and start stone pelting. Parents must ensure that their children, young boys should remain indoors," he said.