Prize catch

THE WEEK|January 26, 2020

Prize catch
Officer caught with militants in Kashmir was under surveillance for weeks, say the police
TARIQ BHAT

ON JANUARY 11, officers of the Jammu and Kashmir Police carried out a stunning operation at a checkpoint on the Jammu-Srinagar highway. They flagged down a private car at Wanpoh in Kulgam district and arrested four men. Two of them were Hizbul Mujahideen militants Naveed Babu and Asif Rather, who were allegedly involved in the killing of non-Kashmiri workers last year. The third man was a lawyer, Rafi Ahmed, and the fourth was Davinder Singh, a deputy superintendent of police who had won the Sher-e-Kashmir Police Medal for Gallantry for his role in an anti-militant operation in 2017.

The police say Singh, who had been part of the official team that received foreign diplomats who visited Kashmir in January, was ferrying the militants to Jammu. “He was arrested when he was driving a car carrying militants; [it] is a heinous crime,” said Vijay Kumar, inspector-general of police. “That is why he is being treated at par with the militants.”

Singh had joined the police in 1990, after graduating from Amar Singh College in Srinagar. He was part of the police’s elite anti-insurgency unit, the Special Operations Group, for a decade. In the late 1990s, Singh got an early promotion to inspector for his role in anti-militancy operations. He was shot in his leg during one such operation, and it left him with a limp.

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January 26, 2020