The first batch of around 1,000 chilli-filled grenades have been despatched to the Kashmir valley to be used as an alternative to pellet guns as a crowd control measure, a senior Home Ministry official said.
An expert committee had recommended the use of Pelargonic Acid Vanillyl Amide (PAVA) shells also called Nonivamide as an alternative to the pellet guns.
The Border Security Force (BSF) had already been asked to manufacture the shells at their Tekanpur facility in Madhya Pradesh. After the shells were ready, they were sent to the valley.
During his two-day visit to Kashmir on August 24-25, Home Minister Rajnath Singh had said an alternative to pellet guns would be given to security forces in the coming days. An expert committee constituted by the government, which submitted its report to the Home Ministry on Monday, recommended withdrawal of metal pellets and replacing them with polymer, rubber and paper bullets.
The committee was not in favour of completely phasing out the use of pellet guns in the Kashmir valley, their use will be regulated instead. A seven-member expert committee headed by T.V.S.N Prasad, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) that was constituted on July 26 to look into the alternatives to pellet guns submitted its report to Home Secretary Rajiv Mehrishi this week.