Massive clashes broke out in educational institutions across Kashmir Valley as students fought pitched battles with police causing injuries to scores of students including girls.
Students were protesting over the police action on some college students at degree college, Pulwama. Earlier, clashes were witnessed between security forces and students near a college in Pulwama area on Saturday that left scores of students injured. The college students had taken out the protest against the laying down of a security check post near the college.
Eye witnesses said that clashes were witnessed across Kashmir turning the streets outside colleges into battlefields. This was the biggest student protest and came only two days after a youth was killed at Batmaloo in Srinagar.
Reports said that students of SP College blocked Maulana Azad Road in Srinagar against the army’s action on students at Pulwama that had left more than two dozen students injured. The army had entered the degree college Pulwama then, leading to pitched battles with students indulged in stone pelting on the security forces.
Earlier during the day scores of students were injure in the retaliatory action by police, while Station House Officer of Kothibagh police station was among the police officers who was injured.
The security forces used tear gas shells and batons to disperse the students, who kept regrouping to engage the security forces.
Students from various others colleges of Pulwama and Shopian in south Kashmir and Srinagar’s Amar Singh College and Women’s College MA Road shouted slogans in solidarity with the students of Pulwama. The students from Kashmir University and Central University of Kashmir in Srinagar also staged peaceful protests.
In north Kashmir, students poured out of the Sopore Degree College in large numbers and shouted slogans against the assault on students.
Some students resorted to stone pelting, leading to clashes with security forces.
The police said that security forces asked the protesters to disperse but they did not budge and started pelting stones on the forces, leading to clashes.
Earlier during the day clashes broke out between police and students at SP College and SP higher secondary school.
As per reports at least 50 students received injuries in the clashes that erupted at different educational intuitions. Situation remained tense in Lal Chowk after the clashes and heavy deployment of police and paramilitary force personnel was made to quell the protests.
Protests were reported from Sumbal, Baramulla Sopore and Pattan towns of North Kashmir while in South Kashmir student protests were witnessed in Khanbal Anantnag, Tral, Doru and Shopian colleges of the valley.
Reports from Shopian and Kulgam suggest that many students were injured in the clashes with the forces. At least seven students were injured in the clashes in Kulgam, said an eye witness. Sources said that four injured students were shifted to the Srinagar hospital for treatment.
Clashes broke out between security forces and agitating college students in Sopore after hundreds of students of government degree college Sopore started a protest march outside college premises and shouted pro-freedom and anti-India slogans. Students boycotted the routine class work and protested in solidarity with the students of government degree college Pulwama.
Protests took a violent turn when government forces tried to stop protesting students at Iqbal market area of town resulting into intense clashes in which half dozen students and a lens man identified as Peerzada Waseem sustained injuries. Shutdown was observed in Sopore town and traffic movement remain suspended.
Meanwhile, a police spokesman said that students of different colleges protested at some places in Kashmir Valley today.
“While at most of the places the students protested inside their college premises, at few places in Srinagar, Pulwama, Shopian and Kulgam the students assembled on the roads and indulged in stone pelting thus disrupting the movement of general people and traffic on busy roads,” the spokesman added.
He said that the police at these places exhibited maximum restraint and dispersed the stone pelting mobs of students by using some teargas shells. At some places the College property was also damaged. In the resultant chaos some students received minor injuries and most of them were discharged after first aid.
While tackling the stone pelting SHO Kothibag and four policemen were injured at MA Road Srinagar. A lady constable also fracture her arm, the spokesman added.