Restore peace in J&K, avoid casualties, Rajnath tells officials

New Delhi: Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Monday held a high-level review meeting on Jammu and Kashmir and instructed security officials to restore peace and normalcy in the state at the earliest. He cautioned that the casualties of both the civilians and security personnel in the violence-hit state should be minimum. The minister was, in turn, briefed by top officials on the prevailing situation in Kashmir and the infiltration bid along the Line of Control (LoC) in Uri sector in Kashmir. National Security Adviser Ajit Doval, Home Secretary Rajiv Mehrishi and chiefs of intelligence agencies and other top civil and security officials attended the meeting, sources said here. The meeting was held even as reports from Srinagar said five civilian protesters were killed in firing by security forces in fresh violence in the Kashmir Valley on Tuesday, taking the deaths to 65 since the July 8 killing of a popular rebel commander. Pramod Kumar, commandant of the 49 Battalion of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), was killed on Monday after four militants hurled a grenade and opened fire at a security patrol in an old city area of Srinagar.