Refuses To Ban Pellet Guns : J&K High Court

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Jammu and Kashmir High Court, on Wednesday, refused to ban the controversial pellet guns used by security forces in Kashmir against protesters.

The plea to ban the pellet guns was filed by the J&K High Court Bar Association.

The High Court said that the use of pellets was “inevitable as long as there is violence by an unruly mob”.

“What kind of force has to be used at the relevant point of time or in a given situation and place has to be decided by the persons in charge of the place where the attack is happening.”

The Bar had petitioned High Court to get the pellet guns banned in Kashmir and sought sanction for prosecution of officers using pellet guns.

Pellet guns attained notoriety in Kashmir after scores of protesters, including several women, were blinded by pellets in the 2016 uprising triggered by the killing of Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani.

After the Bar moved court, the J&K government constituted a committee to explore alternatives to pellet guns with a rider that pellet guns cannot be completed banned.

The CRPF, in 2017, had told the J&K High Court that it fired 1.3 million pellets on protesters from July 8, 2016, for two months.

The force told the court that pellet guns were introduced in J&K for riot control.

“In case this is withdrawn, from the options available with the CRPF, the personnel would have no recourse in extreme situations, but to open fire with rifles which may cause more fatalities,” the CRPF had said in an affidavit.

In September 2016, too, the J&K High Court had called the use of pellet guns “inevitable.”

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