Highway ban against winning ‘hearts, minds’: Former Army chief

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New Delhi, Apr 10: Former Chief of Army Staff (COAS) of the Indian Army General Ved Prakash Malik on Wednesday termed the ban on civil traffic on Kashmir highway against the idea of “winning hearts and minds” of Kashmiris.
He said the ban on the civilian traffic movement in Kashmir was a “dumb idea.”
“Kashmir Ban on move of civ vehs on NH twice a week is a dumb idea 1. Goes against core object of winning hearts & minds. 2. Civil Adm must weigh pros & cons 3. Instead of strengthening local police & int, & improving move security, shows forces becoming over defensive (sic),” Malik wrote on Twitter.
The government has banned movement of civil traffic on the highway from Baramulla to Udhampur on two days a week (Sunday and Wednesday) till 31 May.
However, medical emergency cases, schools, employees, tourists and lawyers have been exempted from the ban and they are allowed after proper checking at intersections.