Central Forces Cannot Substitute State Police

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Kolkata: The Union home ministry told state governments that paramilitary forces cannot act as a substitute for police as they were supposed to be deployed primarily in emergency situations.

The ministry’s remarks come against the backdrop of an ongoing tussle between the West Bengal government and Centre over the latter’s decision to withdraw forces from Darjeeling.

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“CAPFs can’t substitute the state police force as their deployment is related to emergency crisis in states for maintaining law and order,” the Union home ministry said.

The central government earlier this week had decided to withdraw 10 of the 15 companies of central paramilitary forces that were deployed in the hills in the wake of summer unrest.
“The central government has formulated standard operating procedures (SOPs) for deployment of CAPFs and according to it, the central forces would be able to meet more pressing commitments like guarding borders, fighting insurgency, anti-national operations and in related situations which need immediate mobilisation of forces,” the ministry said.

The home ministry statement comes a day after the Calcutta high court stayed BJP-led Centre’s decision to partially withdraw paramilitary forces from Darjeeling, rejecting the argument that they were required to be deployed elsewhere for
elections.

The Centre stated that state governments should not request for an extension of central armed police forces deployment unless there were “ adequate security reasons”.

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