Security officials for changes in operating manual | delhi | Hindustan Times
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Security officials for changes in operating manual

With questioned being raised over killing of innocent tribals along with naxals during the anti-Maoist encounter in Chhattisgarh, security officials believe there is a need to amend the standard operating procedures (SOPs) to save villagers being used as human shield by Maoists. HT reports.

delhi Updated: Jul 05, 2012 00:00 IST
HT Correspondent

With questioned being raised over killing of innocent tribals along with naxals during the anti-Maoist encounter in Chhattisgarh, security officials believe there is a need to amend the standard operating procedures (SOPs) to save villagers being used as human shield by Maoists.

So far, the security forces have been able to identify only seven of the 19 persons killed in the two encounters as Maoists or with criminal record.

The civil society and activists have been demanding a judicial inquiry into the encounter. The Union home ministry on Wednesday held a review of working of the CRPF.

According to sources, there is need for clear directive for the security forces involved in the anti-Naxal operations to deal with human shields. An idea is being explored where anti-naxal forces may be asked to avoid using weapons and use night vision devices while undertaking operations at night as part of the SOPs.

"If civilians are being taken by Naxals as human shield during day time, the forces withdraw. Similar caution is required during night operations," an official said.

Suspecting retaliation by Maoists after the encounter, the home ministry has asked the all naxal-affected states to tighten security in wake of bandh called by Maoists on Thursday.

In an advisory to these states, the ministry has suggested that they deploy adequate security forces in sensitive locations to avoid any attacks perpetrated by Naxals during the bandh. The states are being asked to keep a vigil on railway tracks, roads, bridges and industrial installations, which are primary targets of the extremists.