Time Not Right for AFSPA to Go: Army

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JAMMU:The time is not right for the revocation of the controversial Armed Forces Special Forces Act or AFSPA from Jammu and Kashmir, the top Army officer in the Valley has said on Tuesday.
Calling back troops from peaceful areas of the valley is also not on the cards for now, Lieutenant General Satish Dua, the General Officer Commanding of the Army’s 15 Corps was quoted as saying by the NDTV.
“It has taken us more than two decades to reach a situation when violence is under manageable levels, but it is not time to thin out the Army. If we give terrorists the space, they would be in a position to consolidate,” Lt General Dua said.
Regional parties like the National Conference and the ruling People’s Democratic Party have been advocating a gradual revocation of APSPA from areas in the state which are free from militancy.
Lt General Satish Dua said the army will recommend the revocation of AFSPA, which has been often criticised for the sweeping powers it mandates, when the time is conducive.
“This is not the time for withdrawal of AFPSA. There is peace in the valley, tourists are thronging the valley, this is the time to consolidate the gains and give the situation to civil administration to carry out developmental work. When the situation is right, the Army will recommend the revocation of AFSPA,” Lt Gen Satish Dua said.

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