Chili-filled PAVA shells to replace pellet guns

New Delhi: Ahead of all party delegation’s visit to J&K, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh had approved the use of chili-filled Pelargonic Acid Vanillyl Amide (PAVA) shells as an alternative to pellet guns for the crowd controlling. As many as 1000 new PAVA shells would be reaching the Kashmir Valley today.

PAVA shells are less lethal ammunition, which temporarily incapacitates the targets and renders them immobile for several minutes. Pellet guns are, however, unlikely to be banned completely, but will be used in the rarest of rare cases, according to the reports.

During Singh’s 2 day visit to the Kashmir Valley on 24 and 25 August, he said an alternative to pellet guns will be given to the security forces in the coming days.

Earlier, a 7 member expert committee was constituted by the Home Minister to find alternatives for the pellet guns, which was headed by the Joint Secretary of Home Ministry TVSN Prasad. The use of PAVA was recommended by the committee.

The panel was constituted after scores of protesters were blinded by the use of pellet guns in the Kashmir Valley.

The Kashmir valley is witnessing unrest following the killing of the Hizbul Mujahideen militant Burhan Wani on 8 July.

PAVA shells were under trial for over a year now at the Indian Institute of Toxicology Research, a Council of Scientific and Industrial Research laboratory in Lucknow.

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