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J&K High Court refuses to ban use of pellet guns

India, Srinagar: The J&K High Court on Thursday rejected the plea seeking a ban on the use of pellet guns in order to control street protests in Kashmir valley.

Citing the ground situation, the use of force is inevitable as long as there is violence by unruly mobs. A bench comprising Chief Justice N Paul Vasanthakumar and Justice Ali Mohammad Magrey declined the plea to prosecute the officers who ordered the use of pellet guns, as per Jammu and Kashmir High Court.

Having regard to the ground situation prevailing as of now and the fact that Government of India, Ministry of Home Affairs has already constituted a Committee of Experts through its Memorandum dated July 26, 2016, for exploring other alternatives to pellet guns, the court said.

Before the filing of the report by the Expert Committee and a decision taken at the government level, we are not inclined to prohibit the use of pellet guns in rare and extreme situations, the court said in its order on Wednesday.

The petition was filed by Jammu and Kashmir High Court Bar Association which sought a ban on the use of the pellet guns. The court states, it is manifest that so long as there is violence by unruly mobs, use of force is inevitable.

This court in the writ jurisdiction without any finding rendered by the competent forum/ authority cannot decide as to whether the use of force in a particular incident is excessive or not.