Anantnag: A 70-year-old man mistaken for a ‘braid chopper’, apparently by his own neighbours, breathed his last Friday morning after being hit in the head with a brick late Thursday evening, here in Danter village on the peripheries of main town Anantnag.
Abdul Salam Wani is the first to have been killed in the ongoing chaos which has consumed almost the entire Valley with fresh incidents of ‘braid chopping’ and subsequent protests reported every day.
Wani, as per reports, had ventured out of his house late Thursday night apparently to answer nature’s call when somebody in the neighbourhood mistook him for a ‘braid chopper’ and hit him on the head with a brick.
“He was grievously injured and rushed to Anantnag district hospital. He was referred to a Srinagar hospital but he succumbed soon after reaching there,” a local from Danter village told Kashmir Reader.
He was laid to rest at his ancestral graveyard early Friday morning.
Police, however, are not sure whether the incident was a result of the ‘braid chopping’ scare or there was any other motive behind it.
“We have taken cognizance of the killing. The case is being investigated, and people are being questioned. Hope truth comes to fore soon,” a senior police official from Anantnag told Kashmir Reader.
The killing of Wani has come after a string of incidents where people caught hold of persons they accused of being ‘braid choppers’.
The people apprehended have been mercilessly beaten, and every time, without exception, the apprehended person has turned out to be innocent.
The Anantnag police official lamented that people were getting carried away.
“Even if you suspect that a person is involved in all this, you can hold him and call the police. What is the need to try and lynch him?” the official asked.
Meanwhile the alleged ‘hair chopping’ incidents and the subsequent protests have continued to occur in different corners of the Valley.