Curfew, clashes continue; Kargil observes shutdown
Srinagar: Amid a complete shutdown across the Valley, intense clashes erupted between police and government forces on Thursday. Main roads were blocked with razor wires in all ten districts, including Srinagar. Civilian movement was also blocked by heavy contingents of forces.
Reports said that youth at several areas in Srinagar city, in Karan Nagar, Aali Kadal, Rajouri Kadal, Nowhatta, Bohri Kadal, Khanyar, Natipora, Noorbagh, Batamaloo, Zaldagar, Kani Kadal and Saraf Kadal clashed with forces and pelted them with stones while raising pro-freedom, anti-India slogans.
The forces resorted to heavy teargas and pellet gun firing. Reportedly a dozen youths received injuries during the fierce clashes on Thursday.
South Kashmir areas remained under tight curfew with sensitive spots guarded by a heavy deployment of forces. Reports said that intense clashes occurred in several areas of Pulwama, Islamabad, Baramulla and Kupwara districts. Public address systems played pro-freedom songs at many places throughout the day.
Reports said that a group of protesters in south Kashmir was fired open in the afternoon by government forces injuring three people. The injured were shifted to SMHS hospital in Srinagar. Two youths have also received injuries in clashes that took place in Burhan’s hometown Tral, where forces that had come to block civilian moment in the town were chased away by people.
In Bandipora district of north Kashmir, a strict curfew remained imposed, even though the pro-freedom camp of Kashmir had called for shutdown only till 2pm and had asked people to stock essentials during the remaining hours on Thursday.
In Hajin area, several women including a 50-year-old, were beaten by the army which also ransacked many residential houses. Witnesses told Kashmir Reader that the army beat the women ruthlessly and smashed windowpanes of many residential houses. “They fired indiscriminately on us, chased us and barged into the houses, shops and damaged the property. Around two dozen people received injuries, two of them are said to be critical,” an eyewitness said.
Following the call of Jamiatul Ulema Hozia Ilmia Asna Ashriya, Islamia School Kargil, a complete shutdown was observed in Kargil district of Ladakh division against the killing of civilians in Kashmir.
As per reports, all the business establishments, schools and government offices of the district remained closed. President of the Islamia School Kargil, Sheikh Nazir Ul Mehdi said that the continuous unrest in Kashmir had severely hampered the peaceful atmosphere.
Media reports said that the forces shot at a youth riding a motorcycle which, however, missed him and hit his scooty In Nawab Bazar area of Srinagar. The area also witnessed fierce clashes between forces and youths with forces retaliating with heavy teargas and pellet gun shelling. The witnesses told Kashmir Reader that the forces also shot several pepper gas grenades which caused severe respiratory discomfort among the residents.