Clashes across Valley after Friday prayers; thousands attend funerals of killed youth; police impose curfew in several places, arrest 62
Srinagar: A 13-year-old boy from Dalipora area of Pulwama succumbed to his injuries at SMHS hospital while more than 150 civilians were injured during clashes between youths and government forces on Friday, the 70th day of the uprising in Kashmir against India.
Basit Mukhtar Bhat, 13, son of Mushtaq Ahmad Bhat, was a Class 7 student who was wounded by pellets during clashes in his native area on September 5.
Thousands of people participated in the funeral prayers of Basit. The government forces, however, showered pellets and teargas shells at the mourners when they were marching towards Shaheed Park for burial of the slain youth. The forces’ action triggered clashes between youths and government forces that that left dozens of people injured.
The angry mourners pelted forces with stones and came under heavy shelling by the government troops. The injured were rushed to nearby health centres and one among the injured was referred to Srinagar due to severity of his injuries.
Earlier in the day, clashes erupted after Friday congregational prayers at several places across Kashmir, leaving numerous people with injuries.
More than 25 people were injured at Lawdoora village of Qazigund after forces lobbed dozens of teargas shells and fired pellets to disperse protesters.
Youths hurled stones at the forces and pitched battles continued for several hours. The injured were rushed to nearby health facilities while three persons with pellet injuries in their eyes were referred to Srinagar for treatment.
At Nowpora village of Kulgam district, angry people held demonstrations and clashed with forces in protest against the killing of Rasiq Ahmad who died at SKIMS Soura after battling a bullet injury that pierced through his eyes and damaged the internal parts of his head.
Angry youths hurled rocks at the forces while the latter shot several rounds of pellets and teargas shells to scatter stone-throwing youths. The clashes lasted for several hours and left more than a dozen people injured. One injured was referred to Srinagar.
More than 12 people sustained injuries after forces intercepted a procession that was carried out at Akhran village of Kulgam after Friday prayers. The procession, attended by thousands, was teargassed and several shots of pellets were fired to scatter the protesters. The protesters, however, showed defiance and resisted the forces.
Amid strict curfew, clashes erupted at several places across north Kashmir’s Baramulla district in which more than 40 civilians sustained injuries. The government forces sealed all the four bridges around the old town with concertina wires and contingents of troops were deployed to block civilian moment.
Thousands of people carried out a huge pro-freedom march after Friday congregational prayers at Eidgah Qadeem in Baramulla. The participants tried to march towards civil lines (new town Baramulla) but forces intercepted the march and fired dozens of teargas and pellets. The firing triggered fierce clashes at Azad Gunj and Cement Bridge in which 18 protesters sustained injuries.
A huge pro-freedom rally was carried out from Jamia Masjid Sopore to main chowk Sopore that was attacked by the government troops deployed in the area. Defying restrictions, the protesters tried to march towards the main chowk but the forces fired tear smoke canisters and pellets at the marchers. The clashes left at least 10 civilians injured.
More than 20 people were injured during clashes at Singpora Pattan, Palhallan and Wussan areas of Baramulla district after youths classed with forces following the Friday prayers. Residents said that at most of the areas in Baramulla, including at the Srinagar-Muzaffarabad highway, the army has been deployed and soldiers remain stationed day and night.
Pro-freedom rallies were also held at Watergam, Baharampora, Seelo, Bomai, Sangrama, Wagoora, Kunzar Tangmarg and other areas of Baramulla district.
Large demonstrations were held at Hardeshiva area of Sopore town against the killing of Mansoor Ahmad Lone who was allegedly tortured to death by Rashtriya Rifles soldiers inside the 22 RR camp at Sho village in Sopore on September 14.
As per the locals, Mansoor had gone to offer Eid prayers but didn’t return till his body was found by the locals. The slain youth, locals said, was taken to 22 RR camp by the forces where he was tortured savagely, resulting in his death.
Local residents told Kashmir Reader that the 22 RR camp stationed at Sho, Sopore, has created terror in the area. “The personnel of RR arrest people, particularly youths, and torture them severely inside the camp stationed here (at Sho). They have tortured a number of local people since the uprising erupted in the Valley. The recent victim was Mansoor Ahmad,” residents said.
They said that the army has blocked all the entry and exit points of the village by concertina wires and troop deployments. “The village has been completely sealed by a large contingent of forces. They have even been threatening elders to not allow people to protest or participate in protest programmes,” residents said.
A protest demonstration was held at Nagbal area of Shopian district after Friday prayers. The participants raised anti-India and pro-freedom slogans.
Protests and clashes between youths and government troops were reported from Reshipora and main town Kulgam. At Akingam Achabal and Srigufwara areas of Anantnag district, a huge pro-freedom rally was organised that witnessed participation of thousands of people.
Several people sustained injuries during clashes that erupted at Beerwah town of central Kashmir’ Budgam district after Friday congregational prayers in the local mosques. Troops fired tear smoke shells on protesters while youths hurled rocks at the forces.
Dozens of protestors, including several women, were injured after troops foiled a pro-freedom rally at Ompura in Budgam district. The locals were protesting against the arrest of youths on charges of stone-pelting. The forces fired dozens of teargas shells and pellets at the protestors including women, in which at least 18 people sustained injuries.
At least 16 civilians were injured, three of them severely, in Dooru area of Anantnag after people held demonstrations after Friday prayers. The forces lobbed tear smoke canisters to disperse protesters. Three among the injured suffered pellet injuries and were shifted to District Hospital Anantnag.
In north Kashmir’s Bandipora, thousands of people marched towards the house of Mustafa Mir who was killed after he was hit by a teargas shell during clashes with government forces in Bandipora on Eid-ul-Azha. Thousands of people from Dachigam, Plan, Ajar, Nusoo, Ayathmulla, Nibripora and other adjoining villages assembled at Gulshan Chowk while raising pro-freedom, pro-Mustafa and anti-India slogans.
At several places in Srinagar city, people held protests and clashed with forces after Friday prayers. More than a dozen people suffered injuries in these clashes in the city.
Youths pelted forces with stones at main market Soura after a protest rally carried out from Jenab Saheb Soura to main chowk Soura was intercepted by forces. The forces lobbed tear smoke shells and fired pellets that left several people injured. The injured were either treated locally or were admitted to nearby hospitals.
Pro-freedom rallies and late-night clashes were held at Dalgate, Hazratbal, Noorbagh, Nowpora, Rambagh and in old city of Srinagar.
Government forces damaged a vehicle belonging to Kashmir Reader newspaper at Pampore town. The troops smashed the windshields of the vehicle.
Police on Friday said that sixty-two persons involved in “damaging civilian vehicles, vandalising shops and placing obstructions on roads” have been arrested during the past 24 hours.
“Sixty-two miscreants who have been involved in the offences of damaging civilian vehicles, vandalising of shops and also placing obstructions on roads and lanes have been arrested during last 24 hours across Kashmir,” said a spokesman.
He said that curfew was imposed in parts of Srinagar and in the towns of Anantnag, Pulwama, Shopian, Baramulla and Handwara, in view of violence and stone-pelting incidents on previous Fridays.
“Stray incidents of stone pelting were reported from a few areas of Srinagar, Pulwama, Kulgam, Shopian, Awantipora, Baramulla, Kupwara, Bandipora and Sopore,” said the spokesman.
“At these places, miscreants assembled on the roads after Friday prayers and pelted stones on police and security force deployments. Apart from these incidents the situation remained under control till filing of this report.”
On Thursday last night, some people set ablaze the Panchayat Ghar at Pinglish Tral, causing damages to the structure.
With inputs from Mushtaq Ahmad and Bilal Habib