The Central Reserve Police Force carried out a mega check among its over three lakh personnel to find out if there were any “subversive element” in its ranks, PTI reported on Tuesday. This came in the wake of Jammu and Kashmir police officer Davinder Singh being caught with Hizbul Mujahideen militants earlier this month.
CRPF Director General AP Maheshwari said the apprehension of suspended Deputy Superintendent of Police Davinder Singh is “a grave incident and an area of extreme concern” for the security forces. “No security grid should be allowed to be weakened by such episodes,” he said. “So, all forces have to keep an internal watch.”
“All forces should maintain vigilance so that there is no such type of subversion or some sort of intrusion within the force and to see that somebody is trying to collaborate with the adversaries,” Maheshwari said. However, he added that there was no doubt about the integrity of the CRPF personnel.
“An isolated incident should not be taken as branding of any particular force,” the director general said. He added that the Jammu and Kashmir Police have a done a “tremendous job” in normalising the situation in the Union Territory following the abrogation of its special status under Article 370 of the Indian Constitution.
“We are further strengthening our systems…which were already in place,” he said referring to the vigilance and intelligence checks carried out on CRPF personnel in the Kashmir Valley. The CRPF has deployed around 70,000 personnel in Kashmir for counter-terrorism and law and order operations.
Singh was posted as the deputy superintendent of police at the Srinagar airport. He had allegedly escorted the militants from Shopian in South Kashmir to his home and allowed them to stay overnight.
The militants were identified as top Hizbul Mujahideen commander Naveed Babu, and his accomplices Irfan and Rafi. The four reportedly set out for Jammu on January 11 morning, and planned to go to New Delhi from there. Singh was also seen along with the foreign delegation that visited Jammu and Kashmir.
On January 18, the National Investigation Agency said it has registered a case against Singh and his accomplices under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Amendment Act. On January 15, the Jammu and Kashmir administration “forfeited” the Sher-e-Kashmir Police Medal for Gallantry awarded to Singh. The administration’s order said that his acts amounted to disloyalty and brought the police force into disrepute.
On January 23, an NIA court in Jammu sent Singh to 15-day custody of the investigation agency.
Singh’s office at Srinagar airport, where he was posted in the anti-hijacking squad, has been sealed. Two AK-47 rifles from the car, and a rifle and two pistols were recovered from his home. In 2013, Afzal Guru, the prime accused in the 2001 Parliament attack case, had claimed that Singh had asked him to accompany one of the attackers to Delhi and arrange his stay there.