Crowd ‘frenzy’ continues over braid chopping

Srinagar: The crowds going crazy over the incidents of braid chopping is going worse with every passing day.

After some foreign tourists were targeted by an unruly mob on Saturday night for being the ‘braid choppers’, police on Monday rescued six people from the wrath of vigilantes who are turning violent by attacking the suspects.

“On the evening of 6th of October 2017 two local residents captured two persons at Nishat accusing them of being braid choppers. They were beaten and thrashed severely by the residents. However, as the police got to know about the incident, a police team promptly rushed to the spot and took custody of the ‘captured persons’. They were however, let off after proper investigation and treatment as they had received injuries during thrashing by the people,” a police spokesman said.

One of them Sameer Ahmad Khan son of Noor Mohammad Khan resident of Ahmad Nagar runs a boutique at Gojwara Srinagar under the banner of “Silayee Ghar”. He, along with his friend Tahir Ahmad Beigh son of Ghulam Qadir Beigh resident of Gujwara had gone to collect some material from one of his customers, a girl (name with held) resident of Ishbar Nishat. The girl is also sister in law of Sameer’s brother.

As the duo reached near girls house, some two or three persons raised alarm doubting them as “braid choppers”. Meanwhile several other residents gathered and started beating them mercilessly. They could have been lynched if police did not act on time and rescued them, the spokesman added.

However, since today morning, some Facebook and WhatsApp user groups have started to spread rumours about them that they had admitted their guilt as being “braid choppers”.

Police has taken cognizance of these rumours, and a case FIR number 54  has been registered in Police Station Nishat. The investigation of the case is going on and efforts are on to identify the persons involved in fabricating the news. Police has requested general public not to pay heed to rumour mongers.

Meanwhile, police rescued four outsiders who were mistaken as braid choppers in Nowgam area of Srinagar.

Today in the afternoon, some miscreants floated a rumour that four non-local rag pickers were roaming in village Gandbal Soiteng in Nowgam.

Soon, the rag pickers were surrounded by a mob of around 2000 persons who started abusing and heckling them.

Upon receipt of this information, a police party from  Police Station Nowgam rushed to the spot. As soon as police party reached the spot, miscreants started pelting stones upon them instead of helping them ascertain the facts, police said.

The police party handled the situation very carefully and used maximum restraint. The four outsiders were rescued and their medical examination was also conducted. Enquiry till now has established that the rag pickers were indeed what they were claiming to be, and no angle of braid chopping has been established.

An FIR has been registered against miscreants under relevant sections for rioting, rumor mongering, assault, use of criminal force, the police spokesman added.

He said that the citizens are requested to cooperate with authorities in maintaining peace and tranquility and not to fall prey to rumor mongering.

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