States should procure non-lethal weapons to deal protests: HM

New Delhi, Feb 1 (PTI) The Centre today said stategovernments should procure non-lethal weapons to controlcrowds and civilian protests and avoid casualty.

"We want the states to adopt non-lethal weapons forcrowd control, specially when there is civilian protesters,"Home Minister P Chidambaram said after a conference of chiefministers on internal security here.

He said the Standard Operating Procedures for crowdcontrol have been updated and emphasise has been given on useof non-lethal weapons.

Chidambaram said the SOPs will be circulated to statesafter a committee of police officers examine it.

He said some chief ministers said they want non-lethalweapons and he told them that the Centre was procuring someand the states could do so for their police forces.

The Home Minister said during the conference he drewthe attention of the chief ministers to alleged human rightsviolations.

"I said terrorists, insurgents also violates humanrights, in fact they violates human rights with greaterimpunity, yet since we are in the government, we are electedrepresentatives, we run democratic governments, people hold usin high standard, we must not tolerate any violation of humanrights," he said.

Referring to the police reforms act, Chidambaram said,hopefully, all states would pass their respective policereforms act by the end of 2011 to replace their archaic policeact.

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