SRINAGAR: Half a dozen carts of street vendors were set on fire at Soura during stone pelting clashes between youth and government forces. While locals alleged government forces set the carts on fire, police denied the allegation and blamed the act on ‘miscreants’.
Locals told Kashmir Reader that between 6:30 and 7pm, police which were engaged with stone throwers since afternoon, came down at the chowk and burnt the carts. They said, the carts were shut and covered due to the shutdown called by resistance camp.
“The police was from Soura police station side, while stone throwers were hurling stones from their opposite side. This was the scene mostly during the day,” an eye witness told Kashmir Reader. “Around 6:30-7 pm, police gave stone throwers a slip, and entered stone throwers territory from the opposite side. They first threw ammunition to disperse the demonstrators, than set pull carts on fire.”
They added that a fire tender stationed a stone’s throw from the spot took more than half-an-hour to arrive. The tender later doused the fire with the help of local youth.
Superintendent of Police Hazrabal Amod Nagpure told Kashmir Reader that the police have eyewitnesses that the act was carried out by ‘miscreants’ against whom a case of rioting and arson has been registered.
“Some pull carters had defied the shutdown call, and miscreants did not like it. They threw petrol bombs to get them burnt,” he said.
“Police is always blamed for anything here, so these accusations are of that nature too. We have registered the case and soon they will be arrested. We have local eyewitness account that it was done miscreants,” he added.