Ajit Doval, Satya Pal Malik review J-K security situation
Two days after the Government stripped away the special status of Jammu and Kashmir and reorganized the state into two separate Union Territories, the government released videos and photographs of National Security Advisor Ajit Doval mingling with local people in Shopian, and even sharing a meal with them.
Doval left for J&K on Monday soon after home minister Amit Shah introduced in the Rajya Sabha, resolutions and legislations to bifurcate the state into two union territories, and its special status and the special privileges to which its permanent residents were entitled. The resolutions and legislations were passed by the Rajya sabha on Monday and the Lok Sabha on Tuesday.
Videos and photographs released by various arms of the government showed Doval, sporting a dark olive green vest talking to locals in Shopian. In one of the videos, he is heard asking locals about the Apple crop. Doval is also heard assuring locals about their well being under the new arrangement and explaining how things will look up in the future.
The NSA is also seen sharing a meal with locals in a closed market place in Shopian, in a second video clip that was released. Among other things, he can be heard talking about schools and education of the children of Jammu and Kashmir.
As recently as July 31, security forces killed a terrorist in an encounter in Shopian. A soldier of the 34 Rashtriya Rifles was killed too. Shopian is a stronghold of the Pakistan based Hizbul Mujahedeen (HM) terror group.
Doval handled Kashmir from 1998 to about 2003 in various capacities in the Intelligence Bureau (IB). He took over as the Director of Intelligence Bureau in 2004.
In a third video, Doval is seen talking to policemen of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) in Shopian. Flanked by senior policemen, the NSA is heard encouraging the soldiers, clad in bulletproof jackets and helmets: “The CRPF is one most dependable forces of the country. You have always performed in difficult circumstances.”
With Eid approaching, the administration will have to decide when and how much of the curbs imposed -- a total shut down on communication system, restriction on movements -- are eased. Much of this will depend on the first-hand assessment of Doval. Earlier, the NSA told the government that people at large are supportive of the government’s decision to scrap Article 370 which gave J&K special status.
Earlier, the NSA also met Governor Satya Pal Malik and addressed groups of Jammu and Kashmir Police and Indian army personnel. He said he is aware of the danger the security forces in the state face.