"Bullets Don't Distinguish": J K Cop Warns Civilians Off Encounter Sites

It pains me when a civilian dies, Jammu and Kashmir police chief SP Vaid said. (File)

Jammu:  Civilians crowding encounter sites are responsible for their deaths as bullets don't distinguish between a stone thrower and a terrorist, Jammu and Kashmir Police chief SP Vaid said today. Nobody wants civilian deaths and the police and security forces are pained at such incidents, he emphasised.

The J&K top cop also urged the youth to stay away from such places, as they were "not marriage venues".

"We have been appealing to young boys to stay away from encounter sites. A bullet does not distinguish between a stone pelter and a militant. It has a trajectory to hit. They are responsible for their own deaths. They should not come to encounter sites," Mr Vaid said in a live Twitter question-answer session today. 

He was replying to a question posed by one Tajamul Wani about civilian deaths in gunfights.

The strong words from the Jammu and Kashmir top cop came a day after four civilians were killed in the crossfire in an encounter in Kulgam district. An army officer also lost his life in the line of duty while the three terrorists managed to flee after civilian casualties increased.

"No citizen of India would like any civilian killing. We have been repeatedly requesting people not to come near the encounter sites when bullets fly whether from the militants or from the Army, from paramilitary force and police. They have a trajectory. They will not look for the chest of a particular person. They can hit anybody so it is advisable not to come near the encounter sites," DGP Vaid said.

"It pains me most and pains all the forces when a civilian dies," he added.

"Our effort is not even a single civilian should get hurt, but they have no business to be there. Marriage of the terrorist is not going on. Why are these boys coming near the militant encounter sites," he said.

On the pendency of amnesty for stone throwers against whom police complaints were to be withdrawn, he said the police had already moved the concerned courts in such cases.