Sources say VK Singh, SN Sahay and Dilbhagh Singh are being considered as a replacement for SP Vaid
New Delhi: Days after the release of a terrorist's father in exchange for kidnapped family members of policemen, a top level police officer in Jammu and Kashmir has been transferred. Sources say state police chief SP Vaid is the next in line and the order is likely to come tomorrow. In nearly 20 years, the government has not negotiated with terrorists -- the last instance was the exchange of three jailed terrorists, Masood Azhar, Mustaq Ahmed Zargar and Omar Sheikh, after the hijack of Indian Airlines plane IC-814 in 1999. In a tweet today, state police chief SP Vaid said the transfers are "routine" and a "prerogative" of the government.
Here are 10 points on this big story:
- This afternoon, Abdul Gani Mir, the Additional Director General of Police, Criminal Investigation Department, was replaced by Dr B Srinivas. Sources said the home ministry has asked the state's new Governor, Satyapal Malik, to look for a replacement for SP Vaid.
- Three candidates are being considered for the replacement of Mr Vaid -- VK Singh, SN Sahay and Dilbhagh Singh.
- In a tweet, Mr Vaid said, "@JmuKmrPolice has been fighting a proxy war for decades which requires a lot of courage & determination of the men & officers of JKP. Speculative articles which undermine their morale should be avoided. @ndtv as regards to transfer, it's routine matter & prerogative of the govt."
- In a statement today, the home ministry commended the work done by Jammu and Kashmir police and the "valiant sacrifices" made by its men and officers.
- Three policemen and eight relatives of policemen were kidnapped by terrorists in south Kashmir last Thursday. They were set free hours after the state police released around a dozen family members of terrorists, including the father of Hizbul Mujahideen 'commander' Riaz Naikoo.
- Asadullah Naikoo was arrested after four policemen were killed in a major terror attack on Wednesday. Two houses of terrorists were also set on fire.
- In retaliation, terrorists stormed the homes of policemen across Anantnag, Kulgam, Shopian and Pulwama districts and kidnapped 11 of their relatives.
- The home ministry, sources said, believes the top officers of the state police failed to comprehend the fallout of the kidnappings -- the release of terrorists is believed to have demoralised the rank and file in the department.
- The Central government wants the changes at the top in place before the state votes in local body polls later this year. The municipal elections are slated be held in four phases from October 1 to October 5, and the Panchayat polls will take place in eight phases from November 8 to December 4.
- Mr Vaid, a 1986 batch police officer, took over as state police chief in January 2017.
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