Some senior Jammu and Kashmir Police officers were issued transfer orders on Sunday after a spate of killings of young protesters by security forces, including one on Sunday, threatened to throw the state back into anarchy.
Javaid Ahmad Malla, 18, was shot dead on Sunday in Srinagar by security forces trying to disperse a crowd protesting another killing, also by security forces on Saturday night.
The Sunday protests erupted during the funeral procession of Rafiq Ahmad Bangroo, 24, who died the previous night, allegedly after being beaten up by Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) men on June 12.
Bangroo, too, had been protesting the killing of another boy a day earlier.
Since January, six youths — including five below 20 — have been killed in action by security forces in Srinagar.
The widespread protests prompted the National Conference government to transfer Srinagar’s Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Javed Riyaz Bedar.
Ashiq Hussain Bukhari, who was SSP (Counter-Intelligence), has taken his place, police officials said.
Nine superintendents of police and five deputy superintendents and sub-district police officers have also been transferred from major districts in the Kashmir Valley.
Abdul Hamid, deputy superintendent of police at the Maharajgunj police station, where Malla died, was among those transferred.
“We have made a lot of changes in the police department as the police needed to be streamlined,” CM Omar Abdullah told HT after a high-level meeting here on Sunday.
Security forces have been asked to show restraint and told that human rights violations won’t be tolerated, he said. “The cycle of violence has to be arrested and sensitisation of the police force is the only way the cycle of violence can stop,” Abdullah said.
Security officials said the firings were provoked by the violent youth.