The CRPF fired more than 2,000 pellet cartridges to control protesters who took to the streets in the Valley after the killing of Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani, the security force said.
The pellets fired by security forces to disperse angry mobs have resulted in more than 100 people suffering eye injuries, including complete loss of vision.
The CRPF has been accused of using disproportionate amount of force to control the unrest that plagued Kashmir after the 22-year-old militant was gunned down on July 8.
“We feel sorry for those who received injuries due to the pellets. We are trying to minimise their use so that there are fewer injuries. But we only use them in extreme situations when the crowd cannot be controlled by other means,” CRPF chief K Durga Prasad said.
The security force said it used 2,223 pellet cartridges of different sizes, 4,821 smoke shells, 892 tear smoke grenades, 1,048 rubber bullets, 103 multi button shells, 1,614 plastic pellets and 136 stun grenades to control protesters in different parts of the state during the unrest. The force said as that 1,051 of its personnel were also injured by stone pelters during the turmoil.
The CRPF chief said there was no such thing as a “non-lethal” weapon and that the pellet guns that they used in the Valley was the “least-lethal” option available with the force. He, however, added that the force was looking for alternatives to the pellet gun.