As series of pictures of a policeman in civil clothes wearing a mask and holding a pistol detaining a youth allegedly involved in stone throwing went viral, Jammu and Kashmir Police said that the policeman was not carrying any pistol.
A senior police official on condition of anonymity said it was the stone-throwing protester who was carrying a toy pistol and the policeman in plain clothes recovered it from him.
The police said they have taken four persons into custody who were involved in stone pelting incident after Friday prayers in Nowhatta area of Srinagar.
The official said they had placed 30 policemen who were in plain clothes among around 100 stone pelters, but none of them had any weapon.
“We would face stone throwing in the area on every Friday. We planned to arrest the ring leaders. We successfully kept the policemen in civil clothes at different places among the stone throwers and arrested four persons,” the official said.
He said all the policemen in civilian clothes were in “our close contact.” The official claimed that “the toy pistol was recovered from a protester Mohammad Mehran, who was involved in several other cases of stone pelting.”
Separatist leader Syed Ali Geelani described police’s act as “Israeli tactics”.
This strategy was earlier executed in 2010 when scores of policemen were deployed in the mob to identify and arrested stone pelters in the area.
(With inputs from PTI)