Bullets for Iftaar
By-Stander Shot Dead In Islamabad, 4 Injured; Teenager Killed In Narbal;
2 PROTESTERS SHOT IN SHOPIAN, 2 IN PATTAN, 2 IN SOPUR, 1 IN BANDIPORA
KHALID GUL/GOWHAR BHAT
Srinagar, Aug 14: On the 3rd day of Ramadan, police and CRPF troops shot dead two persons just before Iftaar (breaking of the fast), one at Islamabad in south Kashmir and another at Narbal in Srinagar outskirts. The police and troops also fired at protesters at four other places, injuring at least a dozen persons. With today’s killings, the number of victims of CRPF and police since June 11 has gone up to 58.
One person was killed and four others injured, one of them critically, when paramilitary troops resorted to indiscriminate firing on protesters in the South Kashmir town of Islamabad Saturday evening. Two more persons sustained bullet injuries in police firing in Shopian also.
Strict curfew was enforced in old town as well as civil lines area of Khanabal-Pahalgam road. However, late in the evening when the restrictions were eased on the K.P road, youth in large numbers assembled in Laizbal and staged peaceful pro-freedom demonstrations.
“Though the protesters dispersed peacefully before the Iftaar (breaking of fast) but a vehicle of paramilitary CRPF men passed through the area and opened indiscriminate fire on the bystanders, injuring five,” eyewitnesses told Greater Kashmir.
The injured were referred to district hospital Islamabad while one of the critically injured- Irshad Ahmad Latoo s/o Late Abdul Gaffar Latoo, aged 35, a government employee of S.K.Colony- succumbed to his injuries. He had bullet injury in his chest. Among the other four injured the condition of one injured personm, Rajoo S/O Muhammad Altaf Ahangar, aged 17, was stated to be critical and was referred to Srinagar immediately. The other three injured, all in their teens, identified as Arif, Amir and Abid all residents of Sarnal were also later referred to Srinagar.
The deceased youth according to the doctors and attendants refused to take water before succumbing, saying he was fasting. As soon as the news of the killing spread in the town people in large numbers poured into the streets and staged massive pro-freedom and anti-India demonstrations. Later, when the funeral procession of the deceased youth was being carried, the police and CRPF men again resorted to intense tear gas shelling and fired hundreds of rounds in the air at several places including Sarnal and Khanabal. However, the mourners offered stiff resistance and later thousands others joined the funeral procession and the body was carried throughout the streets of the town. The angry youth later tried to set ablaze the Sherbagh Police Station. However, police and CRPF men resorted to aerial firing and fired tear gas canisters and dispersed the youth.
Massive protests were going on in the entire town while thousands of people including women and children were all on the roads and staging night protests. The loud speakers of the masjids were being used to chant pro-freedom slogans and people were being asked to come out. Women while holding lanterns were organizing sit-ins at various places in the old town including Lal Chowk, Cheeni Chowk, Reeshi Bazar and Malakhnag.
Meanwhile, in Shopian town two people were injured when CRPF men fired upon the protesters who had defied curfew restrictions and were staging pro-freedom protests. One of the injured youth, Asif Maqbool S/O Muhammad Maqbool of Baba Mohalla was shifted to Srinagar.
Reports of pro-freedom demonstrations were also received from the adjoining areas of Pulwama, Kakpora, Awantipora, Pampore, Tral, Kulgam, Bijbehara and Islamabad.
In Dooru, police used force to disperse a peaceful procession. The police and CRPF men also went berserk and barged into the sub-district hospital and beat up the patients and attendants injuring several of them. “They also resorted to aerial firing inside the hospital,” eyewitnesses said.
Strict curfew remained enforced in all the towns of south Kashmir.
A teenager was killed and several others injured when paramilitary CRPF troopers opened fire on a group of people who came out to offer prayers at Narbal Bazar in city outskirts Saturday evening.
Eyewitnesses said minutes before the Iftaar, paramilitary troopers chased people away and fired directly on a teenage boy, Umar Ahmad Dar son of Abdul Ahad Dar of Narbal, who was standing on the roadside.
“CRPF men ran after Namazees and opened fire on a boy without any provocation,” eyewitnesses told Greater Kashmir over phone.
“It was just two minutes before Iftaar. He was shot twice and he fell on the ground,” they said.
Umar, 16, was shifted to JVC Medical College Bemina where he succumbed to his injuries. Doctors said he had bullets in chest and abdomen.
The locals said the CRPF men then barged into residential houses and ruthlessly beat up inmates.
“They didn’t even spare women and children. They went wild and damaged the property in homes,” witnesses said.
The news about the death only brought more people on roads as they staged massive protests against the killing on Srinagar-Gulmarg road. They raised pro-freedom and anti-India slogans.
Earlier, for the third consecutive day protests broke out in several parts of the city including Khanyar, Fateh Kadal, Rainawari, Nowhatta, Tengpora, Ziarat Batamaloo, Kralpora and Wanabal Rawalpora after the dawn prayers.
At several places including at Khanyar, CRPF men opened fire to disperse the protesters. By the morning, police and CRPF was deployed in large numbers across the city, which implemented curfew and beat up civilians who ventured out of homes.
They blocked roads at a number of places placing barricades and laying loops of razor wires. At several places, including at Narparistan, Fateh Kadal, Bagh-e-Islam colony and Tengpora, police and CRPF men, as an act of vengeance against protesters, attacked residential houses and power transformers.
In uptown Hyderpora, policemen beat up a doctor, Manzoor Ahmed Dar, when he was on his way to home.
“I was on way to home when policemen asked me to go to my residence via another lane. While I approached the lane, it was blocked by boulders. The policemen asked me to remove them. But as soon as I tried to remove the boulders, policemen pounced upon me and beat me up ruthlessly,” Dar told Greater Kashmir over phone from SKIMS, where he was admitted.
He sustained severe head injuries. The incident sparked protests in the area.
At Humhama, witnesses said three teenagers Tariq Ahmed Dar, Tanveer Ahmed Bhat and Hashim Bashir were detained by police on Friday night.
Witnesses said they had ventured out of their home after dinner.
Meanwhile, CRPF Director General Vikram Srivastava arrived here following recurrent reports of high-handedness by CRPF personnel. He held a meeting with Chief Minster Omar Abdullah.
Curfew-like restrictions remained imposed in Kupwara district. People staged massive protests at Chowgal, Handwara. Police baton charged, fired tear gas shells and rubber bullets to disperse the protesters. Witnesses said two persons, including a woman, were injured in the police action. They were identified as Jana Bagum, 60, and Mudasir Bakshi, 15, both residents of Chowgal.
Locals alleged CRPF men broke the glasses of residential houses after the protests.
In Pattan town in Varmul district, two civilians were wounded when police opened fire on the protesters on Saturday afternoon.
Eyewitnesses told Greater Kashmir that paramilitary CRPF troopers and police opened fire on protesters at Singhpora Pattan this morning wounding a civilian, Firdous Ahmed Khan.
He was shifted to SKIMS Soura where his condition is stated to be critical.
Minutes after the incident, another civilian was wounded in firing at Hanjiwera, Pattan.
The injured was identified as Bilal Ahmed Shiekh of Kripalgarh Pattan.
Meanwhile 10 persons including two with bullet injuries were wounded when police and CRPF troopers fired bullets and teargas canisters to disperse the protesters in Bomai and Seelo Sopur.
Eyewitnesses said that hundreds of people from adjoining villages marched towards Bomai to protest against the killings.
As the procession reached Bomai, police fired teargas canisters to quell the protest in which several persons were wounded.
Meanwhile four persons were wounded in Seelo, Sopur, when police fired teargas canisters and bullets upon the protesters this afternoon.
They said one of the critically wounded Farooq Ahmed has been shifted to SKIMS for treatment.
The protesters also pelted stones on the RR camp at Seelo, Sopur.
Meanwhile, curfew was imposed in Varmul town to prevent people from staging protests against the killings of unarmed protesters.
In Bandipora district, at least 10 persons, including a SHO and Sub-Inspector of police, were injured during clashes with the protesters. The protesters also attempted to set ablaze a police vehicle.
Witnesses said protestors attacked an armoured police vehicle (Rakshak) and drenched it with petroleum and set it on fire near Jamia Kadeem, Bandipora.
A CRPF party, however, intervened and rescued the policemen from the vehicle. The CRPF men fired on protesters injuring a youth, Manzoor Ahmed Ganie of Gundpora.
In the day long clashes, several persons including SHO Abdul Khalid and SI Shabir Ahmad of police station Bandipora were injured.
Earlier in the day, thousands of people after dawn prayers staged pro-freedom demonstrations in various localities including Ward 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6. Protests were also held at Ashtango, Putushay, Bankoot, Madar, Aloosa, Arin and Quil. They tried to reach the curfew-bound Bandipora town but were prevented by police.
Locals of several localities in Bandipora town said that CRPF barged into the houses and beat up the inmates. They damaged the windowpanes and household items.
BANIHAL OBSERVES BANDH ON 2ND DAY:
Life was thrown out of gear in this township of Ramban district on Saturday following a complete shut down in protest against the arrest of over a dozen youth and cane-charge by police after locals took out protest demonstration in the area on Friday against the killing of innocent civilians in Kashmir Valley.
All the shops and other business establishments remained closed throughout the day. The vehicular movement on Jammu-Srinagar highway remained, however, normal.
The locals were demanding immediate release of all the persons detained by the police on Friday after demonstrations in the township. “Police arrested innocent youth on Friday and also on Saturday and the detainees were not even allowed to see their relatives,” a local resident said.
Police had picked up picked up 8 youths last evening and three others today for ‘indulging in violence.’
A heavy contingent of police and paramilitary personnel were also deployed in the town to avoid any untoward incident. Senior officers from the civil and police administration were camping in the town to monitor the situation.
PDP patron Mufti Muhammad Sayed has condemned today’s killing, asking the government to immediately put an end to the continuous killing of peaceful protesters.
(With inputs from Umar Maqbool and Muhammad Taskeen)
Lastupdate on : Sat, 14 Aug 2010 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Sat, 14 Aug 2010 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Sun, 15 Aug 2010 00:00:00 IST
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