Srinagar: New Delhi has supplied government forces in J&K with more than one lakh plastic bullets to counter protests in the valley.
The Hindustan Times reported on Tuesday that GOI has also supplied forces with PAVA (pelargonic acid vanillyl amide, an organic compound found in natural chilli pepper) shells that are more pungent, to increase their effectiveness. The new shells consist of oleoresin, which is more natural and pungent in comparison to the chemical-based PAVA shells.
Quoting unnamed home ministry sources, the report said that the supply of plastic bullets, considered less lethal than the pellet guns, has been made after an extensive trial with a few thousand such bullets.
“As part of the graded response to deal with violent crowds, the plastic bullets are being employed before using pellet guns,” the unnamed home ministry official was quoted by the report.
Plastic bullets can be fired from an AK-47 rifle only in a single shot mode, and not in burst mode, officials said.
Forces now have various options—including tear smoke shells, PAVA shells, rubber bullets that are fired from gas guns, plastic bullets and pellets guns—before actually opening fire.