The Centre on Wednesday announced that around 10,000 paramilitary forces personnel will be immediately withdrawn from Jammu and Kashmir, NDTV reported. The companies of the security forces will now go back to wherever they had been deployed before being shifted to the erstwhile state, according to an order by the Union home ministry.

The security forces were deployed in the region last year in August when the Union government ended the special status accorded to J&K under Article 370 and split it into two Union Territories. The state was placed under the most complete lockdown in its history, with restrictions on movement, a communications blackout and mass arrests. The region has been attempting to limp back to normalcy since then, with 4G internet services largely still suspended.

“It has been decided to withdraw 100 Coys [companies] of CAPFs [Central Armed Police Forces] with immediate effect from J&K and revert back to their respective locations,” the home ministry’s order read. Out of the 100 companies, 40 will be from the Central Reserve Police Force and 20 each will be from the Central Industrial Security Force, the Border Security Force and the Sashastra Seema Bal, it added.

A CAPF company has an operational strength of around 100 personnel.

The decision to withdraw the forces was taken after the Union home ministry reviewed the situation of their deployment in the Union Territory. The home ministry had last withdrawn 10 CAPF companies from Jammu and Kashmir in May, while 72 such units were shifted in December, according to PTI.

The CRPF has been asked to make arrangements for air lifting the units to Delhi and other locations, the news agency quoted unidentified security forces officials as saying.

“The units that are being withdrawn are deployed both in Jammu and Srinagar,” a senior CAPF official said. “It was felt that the counter-insurgency and counter-terrorist grid is intact in the Union Territory and these additional units that were sent in last year can be de-inducted giving them the much required rest, recuperation and training.”

The official also cited logistical issues and said that since winters would set in the Valley soon, it would be difficult to keep units of the forces in makeshift camps and “temporary dwellings”.

With the latest de-induction, the Central Reserve for Police Force will have a strength of about 60 battalions in Kashmir Valley, apart from very few units of the other CAPFs.