Clashes follow attack on army patrol, journalist injured by pellets

Clashes follow attack on army patrol, journalist injured by pellets
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Militants attack residence of Congress politician in Shopian town

SHOPIAN: Suspected militants on Tuesday fired at an army patrol at Meminder village of Shopian, but no loss of life or injury was reported on either side. Locals said that soon after the attack, a joint team of forces comprising army, paramilitary CRPF, and SOG of police cordoned the area and conducted searches.
Villagers of Meminder said that an army party was already present in the village when the army patrol came under attack.
Soon after the joint team of government forces arrived in the village, local youths came out and began hurling stones at the forces, who retaliated with tear smoke shells and pellets. A video journalist was injured by pellets in his head during the clashes. He was identified as Aijaz Ahmad Dar, who works for a New Delhi-based TV channel.
Dar said that despite showing his press identity card to the government forces, he was shot at with pellets.
“I showed them my identity and shouted that I am a journalist, but they did not listen and showered me with pellets,” Dar told Kashmir Reader. He said that another journalist accompanying him was wearing a press jacket, but it made no difference to the government forces.
Doctors at district hospital Shopian told Kashmir Reader that the injured journalist was brought to the hospital but was discharged after treatment.
A police officer said that the protesters were contained “peacefully”.
Locals of the village said that the militant attack on the army patrol took place in an orchard area, but government forces later carried out searches in residential areas. They said that the cordon was called off by the forces at about 5pm after no trace of militants was found in the village.
Today’s attack on government forces was the fifth since Friday in south Kashmir.
Late in the evening, militants attacked with a grenade the residence of Congress’s former district president for Shopian at Bon-Bazar area. Locals said the grenade attack was followed by intense firing.
However, no loss of life or injury to any person was reported in the incident. Witnesses said that more government forces reached the spot and the area was cordoned off to nab the assailants. They said that a loud bang, probably of the grenade blast, was followed by sounds of heavy gunfire, creating panic among the locals.
On July 27 this year, suspected militants had looted three weapons from policemen guarding the residence of this politician.