Pellet victims recount Friday horror at SKIMS hospital

Pellet victims recount Friday horror at SKIMS hospital

Srinagar: Twelve persons with severe injuries were admitted to the SKIMS Hospital, Bemina. Five of them have pellet injuries in eyes, elbow of one is a mangled mess of flesh and exposed, shattered bone and others have tearsmoke canister injuries.
Bilal Ahmad, who has the scary wound in the elbow, recounted how he and his three cousins were talking about the uprising last evening outside a closed shop when an police vehicle approached them.
“There was no protest in our area during the day. It was peaceful evening. When we saw the vehicle coming towards us we ran away. They fired at us from a close range. It felt like something pulled out my elbow from my body. It was so painful that I fainted and fell on the road,” Bilal said.
Bilal was brought to SKIMS Hospital, Bemina at 11 pm on Friday. Doctors said he has severe bone loss, muscle loss and capillary loss.
“It is uncertain to say at this time if his elbow will ever recover as it is 100 percent damaged by pellets,” they said.
A relative of Bilal said they were stopped at gun point by CRPF in Safakadal.
“We lied to them saying he was injured in an accident,” his relative said. He further said they were stopped at number of places by government forces, which led to loss of blood in Bilal’s arm.
In Beeru, Badgam, hundreds of protesters from various villages were marching on Friday towards Aaripanthan, where four people were shot dead by government forces on Tuesday.
Mohammad Yousuf, who has suffered pellet injury in his right eye, said the forces fired into the peaceful procession that had a sizable number of women and children.
“Near police station we were intercepted by the forces and they fired pellets, tear smoke shells. Dozens were injured,” said Yousuf who had suffered pellet injuries last Friday also.
A total of 398 persons have been treated for different injuries since the uprising started last month, the chief medical officer of the hospital said. Two of the injured succumbed to their injuries.
In Pallahalan, Pattan in North Kashmir, more than ten thousand protesters, which includes elders, youth, children and women, had gathered after Friday prayers to protest against the bloodbath in the valley.
People said village elders had appealed to the protesters beforehand that they should not throw stones and should protest peacefully.
“The protest was peaceful but they still fired pellets, tear smoke shells and rubber bullets,” said Aijaz, aged 22, who has pellet injury in the eye.
Some of the injured in the protest includes, Bilal, 17 (pellets in his eyes and face), Nazir, 30, (pellet injury in the right eye), Hilal Ahmad, 20 (pellet injury in face) and Yaseen, 20, (pellets in head).
From Hajin, Bandipora, 18-year-old Muzaffar has suffered pellet injury in his right eye. He said, “I have been protesting since 2008.”
Javid, a resident of Hajin, said CRPF and army have been raiding the village during night, smashing glass panes and arresting youth.
“One of the arrested boys is 10 years old. Some 20 youths have been arrested without any charges. They only want to intimidate and crush this uprising in our village,” Javid said.
On Friday, protests were reported at HMT, Srinagar. Some 500 youths tried to storm the CRPF camp there. The CRPF troopers fired pellets, tearsmoke shells, injuring more than 15 youths.
Mansoor, aged 23, suffered pellet injury in his right eye. He said, “I have started protesting against India’s illegal occupation since 2008. It is our right to protest.”
He said army has been raiding residential areas during the night and removing the Pakistani and Islamic flags.
“People are so scared that they remain awake all night fearing the army might take their sons away,” he said.
Jibran, a 16-year-old boy, was injured during a protest in Bemina Housing Colony on Friday after he was hit by a tearsmoke shell in his ear. He is being treated at SKIMS Hospital, Bemina.

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