In a significant step toward combating terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir, Director-General of J&K Police Dilbag Singh has ordered the filling of all vacant positions of Special Police Officers (SPOs) assigned to Village Defence Committees. Singh has directed that the vacant positions be filled by August 15.
According to reports, over 700 Village Defence Committee SPO vacancies will be filled in the next 14 days. The decision has been made to fully reactivate the Village Defence Committees as a terror threat looms in Jammu and Kashmir's hilly areas.
The Village Defence Committees were established in the Doda region in the mid-1990s, and were later expanded to other districts in the state.
Given the current security situation, it would be undesirable to weaken the existing VDCs. It would be preferable to have SPOs from the same village where the VDC is operating and where the VDC SPO was disengaged,” according to an official communiqué issued by DGP Dilbag Singh and addressed to Additional DGP, Jammu Zone, Mukesh Singh. According to the reports of Jammu Zone District Superintendents of Police, 732 vacancies have arisen as a result of the disengagement of VDC SPOs for various reasons in the districts of Kathua, Samba, Udhampur, Doda, Kishtwar, Reasi, and Ramban. The district of Doda has the most vacancies, with 335. Kishtwar comes in second with 180 vacancies and other are Reasi (94), Ramban (44), Samba (32), Kathua (31) and Udhampur (16).
The aim of the VDCs is to ensure that locals can counter-terrorism in the region. This also comes as terror activities in the Union Territory have increased in recent months. Therefore the vacant posts have to be filled up by August 15