Davinder Singh’s arrest prompted search for black sheep, says CRPF chief AP Maheshwari
The Central Reserve Police Force, the Centre’s lead counter-insurgency force, had carried out a massive internal audit to check if there were any attempts of subversion within the force after the arrest of J&K police officer Davinder Singh, CRPF chief AP Maheshwari said on Tuesday.
Davinder Singh, the Deputy Superintendent of Police of the J&K Police, was arrested on January 11 on charges of colluding with terrorists. Singh’s arrest had stunned the J&K police force but it had also underscored the possibility that there might be other officers as well who could collude with terrorists.
Maheshwari, who had recently taken over the CRPF, said “It was a grave incident....an area of extreme concern”.
“No security grid should be allowed to be weakened by such episodes. So, all forces have to keep an internal watch. All forces should maintain vigilance so that there is no such type of subversion or some sort of intrusion within the force or somebody trying to collaborate with the adversaries. It’s a serious matter,” Maheshwari said.
At the CRPF, which has deployed about 70,000 personnel in Jammu and Kashmir for security and counter-terror operations, Maheshwari said the force again ran a complete check again. “We are further strengthening our systems, which were already in place,” he said.
Maheshwari said if something happens somewhere (such as the arrest of Davinder Singh), “it is a case to revisit ourselves and that’s what we have done and we have no doubt (after audit about integrity of our personnel).”
The central police force, the largest paramilitary force in the world, has a sanctioned strength of 3 lakh personnel and is the lead force to counter terrorists in J&K and the Maoists in the heartland.
“We constantly carry such audits because we know three security principles - which are - anti-sabotage; access control and anti-subversion. So, there is already an inbuilt system - We have a vigilance cell, we have an intelligence cell - It is their duty to keep checking (any subversion activities).”
Maheshwari said the Davinder Singh case did not reflect on the entire J&K force and was an isolated incident.
“If in an isolated incident, somebody does this, it should not be taken as any type of aspersion on the dignity of the force and on the strength of the force… This is, yes, a matter of concern, and all (forces) should see that these things don’t occur,” he said.