Shopian: Top police and army officers on Tuesday met families of active militants here in Shopian and asked them to persuade their sons to lay down arms and return to a normal life.
The officers met the families at Batpora cricket stadium where a ‘Jashini Janoob’ programme was organised by the government. It was the first of its kind interaction with the families of militants in the past many years.
General Officer Commanding 15 Corps (GOC) Lieutenant General DP Pandey said that no person was bad but it were circumstances which led a person on to the wrong path, while some others were motivated towards the wrong path. He also said that some youths had taken up arms simply in the spirit of youth.
“The surrounding influences and sometimes the social media encourages some children to follow the wrong path,” Pandey said while requesting the families to bring back their children from militancy as there was nothing to be gained from losing their children.
Pandey asked the families if they had apprehensions that if they brought their children back, they may be attacked by other militants. He said that in such a case, the children will be quietly sent outside for some time where they will remain under their parents’ supervision.
“We would send them outside the Valley for a few years where they will remain under your supervision,” Pandey told parents.
Gen Pandey said that he requested the GOC Victor force for a personal meeting with militants’ families so that he could personally request the families to persuade their sons to leave the path of violence.
“If any militant is ready to surrender even during an encounter, we will save him at any cost,” he said.
Gen Pandey said that there were some “white collar militants” among the general masses whose children study in different states of India but who want the children of others to pick up arms and get killed.
Inspector General of Police, Kashmir, Vijay Kumar was also present at the occasion. He also requested the families to bring their children back from militancy.
He said that the police has been providing ample opportunity to militants to surrender even during encounters.