Peaceful protesters shot in Pulwama
1 KILLED, 33 INJURED; HABBA KADAL MAN SUCCUMBS; VALLEY-WIDE PROTESTS CONTINUE
Pulwama, Aug 5: One person was killed and 30 others injured, 6 of them critically, when police and paramilitary CRPF men resorted to indiscriminate firing on a peaceful sit-in protest at Wagoora on the outskirts of Pulwama town. Late in the evening, three persons were injured in CRPF firing on protesters in Samboora. The man injured at Ganpatyar Habba Kadal in CRPF firing last night succumbed to injuries this morning. Today’s two killings took the death toll to 49 in the 56 days of turmoil in the valley since June 11.
The slain youth has been identified as Shabir Ahmad Malik S/o Abdul Aziz Malik, aged 30, of Lonepora, Newa.
Shabir was critically injured in firing that took place in Wagoora near Degree College Pulwama. He along with other youth Muhammad Umar Wani were admitted to SMHS Hospital in Srinagar. More than 30 other people have been injured in the firing incident. “Shabir had received a bullet in his neck and died at the hospital,” doctors in SMHS told Greater Kashmir.
The condition of Umar Wani son of Muhammad Yusuf Wani of Gosu Pulwama is stated to be critical.
Eyewitness said that people from adjoining areas were coming back from Zadoora area of Pulwama where they had gone to attend the Rasm-i-Chaharum (fourth day mourning) of Muhammad Yaqoob Bhat, a local Imam killed on Sunday.
“As people of the adjoining areas of the district were marching back in the form of a procession they were intercepted by police and CRPF men near Degree College Pulwama at Wagama and asked to disperse. The protesters refused and staged a sit-in telling the forces to allow them to go ahead with their peaceful procession,” eyewitnesses told Greater Kashmir.
They said that the force personnel asked all the protesters to raise their hands and then resorted to indiscriminate firing from three sides on the peaceful sit-in procession.
Doctors in the district hospital Pulwama said that police and CRPF men didn’t allow the hospital ambulance to rush towards the spot and most of the injured were either shifted to Srinagar and to Primary Health Centre Newa.
As soon, as the news of the firing on the peaceful protesters spread in the area thousands of people came out on the streets in Pulwama, Kakpora, Zadoora, Sumboora and Pampore and staged massive pro-freedom protests which were on when this report was being filed.
In Samboora, CRPF men again fired upon protesters injuring three persons, one of them identified as Abdul Rasheed Reshi of the same area. Earlier, on the call of Hurriyat Conference (G) district unit Pulwama, thousands of people defied curfew restrictions and marched towards Zadoora Pulwama to express solidarity with the family of the slain Imam killed in police and CRPF firing on Sunday.
Though strict curfew was in place in Pampore and Kakpora townships and police and CRPF men were deployed in strength but on finding a sea of people swarming into the streets the forces provided safe passage to the protesters.
Early in the morning thousands of people from Pampore town and its peripheries including Samboora, Khrew, Zewan, Patalbagh, Wayen marched towards Kakpora where they were joined by thousands of other protesters and started marching towards Zadoora amid pro-freedom and anti-India slogans.
As the march reached Zadoora, thousands of other protesters from the peripheries of Pulwama and Kakpora including Newa and Tahab also joined in. The protesters then visited the house of 23-year old slain Imam, Muhammad Yaqoob Bhat. Bhat, who was fired upon by the police and CRPF men on the Kakpora bridge when he was leading peaceful protest demonstrations on Sunday. Bhat used to lead prayers in a local mosque and was a Hafiz too. The Hurriyat (G) activists of Pulwama, who had called for the Zadoora march, addressed the protesters.
“People in Pampore and Kakpora areas used community speakers and loud speakers of masjids warning the police and CRPF men to let the demonstration proceed towards Zadora following which the entire deployment was withdrawn and the protesters went forward peacefully,” eyewitnesses told Greater Kashmir. It was the second such march in the district after Khrew march on Wednesday which had also been called by the Hurriyat (G), Pulwama district unit.
A large community langar (kitchen) was set up by volunteers in Zadoora where the visitors were offered meals.
Later in the evening a massive pro-freedom demonstration was taken out in Pampore town also which was addressed by the Jamat-i-Islami spokesperson, Advocate Zahid Ali.
Addressing the massive gathering of people at Namlabal area of the town, Zahid while appealing the people to continue with their protests said, “ The movement has entered into the crucial juncture and the need of the hour is to remain steadfast and committed on our stand and be aware of the vested interests who are hell bent upon creating ripples in this just struggle.”
He also appealed the people to follow the teachings of Quran and Sunnah to reach their goal.
Later, thousands of people offered special prayers for those killed during the recent police and CRPF firing.
Reports of protest demonstrations were also received from many adjoining villages of Pulwama, Rajpora, Awantipora and Tral.
In Shopian district reports of pro-freedom demonstrations were received from the adjoining villages of Meemandar, Gagran and Zainapora. However, police and CRPF men used force by resorting to aerial firing and lobbying tear gas shells injuring several persons. Strict curfew remained enforced in the Shopian township.
In Kulgam district which had witnessed violent protests during the past few days, curfew was extended to many villages of the district while it has been already been in place in the towns of Kulgam and Qaimoh.
In Frisal, Khudwani, Redwani, Kujar, Mushpoora and Hawoora people alleged the SOG men and paramilitary CRPF men resorted to loot and also beat up the inmates including women and children.
“The troopers entered the villages and after ransacking houses and beating up inmates asked all the women to come out and then after assembling them in a field mercilessly thrashed them and also molested them,” villagers told Greater Kashmir.
Several villagers including women and children were later hospitalized in the sub-district hospital Yaripora and district hospital Kulgam.
They also alleged that the forces didn’t even spare the livestock and attacked them with sharp weapons.
The villagers later came out and protested against the excesses. However, police and CRPF men lobbed tear gas canisters and fired in air to disperse the protesters at Hawoora villages injuring at least 15 people.
Meanwhile, the condition of many injured persons injured in the police firing on Tuesday continues to be critical, according to the doctors attending them.
Reports of protest demonstrations poured from many areas of Islamabad district including Achabal, Kokernag, Dooru, Verinag, Shangus, Mattan and Aishmuqam. People from many adjoining villages of Bijbehara town staged massive pro-freedom demonstrations and tried to march towards the town but police and CRPF men used force on them injuring many.
In Islamabad town where shoot at sight orders are already in place curfew was strictly enforced in the old town as well as the civil lines area of Khanabal-Pahalgam road. However, later in the evening violent clashes erupted in the entire town as the youth defied the curfew. The protesters clashed with police and CRPF men at many areas of the town including Khanabal, Naibasti, Laizbal and in the old town areas of Dangerpora, Mattan Chowk, Malkakhnag, Cheeni Chowk, Reeshi Bazar, Kadipora, Sarnal, Janglat Mandi, Sherpora, Lal Chowk, Ashajipora and Dilagam. The forces resorted to aerial firing and lobbed tear gas canisters injuring many.
The residents of Anchidora alleged that the CRPF men barged into several houses last evening and mercilessly beat up the inmates. The critically injured persons, Zaffar Farooq Salati and his brother Farooq Ahmad Salati, were later hospitalized. In Moominabad, people organized a blood donation camp as hundreds of people donated blood.
“We established this camp last weak and despite restrictions on movement, the response of the people has been tremendous,” said a volunteer Ruheed Baldev, a lecturer, who was the first to take the initiative.
GOWHAR BHAT ADDS FROM SRINAGAR:
The toll of killings by police and CRPF continues to mount as another civilian, who was shot at by CRPF in old city Wednesday night, succumbing to his injuries at SMHS hospital here today even as summer capital witnessed another day of curfew on Thursday.
Officials at SMHS hospital declared 48-year-old Ghulam Nabi Badyari of Ganpatyar Habba Kadal dead this morning.
CRPF troopers shot him near his residence Wednesday night when protests were going in the area. He had sustained bullet injury in his abdomen and was rushed to the hospital where he was put on life-support system.
The word about his death bought people, including women and children, in large numbers on roads in protest. They defied curfew and raised pro-freedom slogans and staged demonstrations at Ganpatyar, Habba Kadal, Gaw Kadal and other neighbourhoods.
The repeatedly clashed with police and CRPF personnel who baton charged, lobbed tear smoke canisters and fired live ammunition to disperse the protesters.
Hundreds of people participated in his Nimaz-e-Jinazah. The protests continued after he was laid to rest.
In the rest of the city, amid shoot-at-sight orders, curfew remained imposed for the seventh day today.
Additional police and CRPF troopers, who were bought in a few days back in view of the escalating protests, remained deployed in almost all localities.
At the break of dawn, police as well as CRPF vehicles fitted with loud speakers made announcements asking people to stay indoors. They warned of firing at civilians who would venture out.
Meanwhile, the continuous curfew has resulted in the shortage of the essentials, mainly foodstuff, in most of the areas of the city.
In several areas of the city, people are raising money and pooled at Mohalla-level to support the poor and needy in this hour of crisis.
In uptown Chanapora, where a youth succumbed yesterday after being shot at by forces last week- curfew remained imposed and no one was allowed to venture out.
However, at a few places people staged protests in Masjids over loudspeakers against the killings.
At Bemina, where a young man was killed in police and CRPF firing Wednesday night, locals staged protest in the area against the killing. But the heavy presence of forces quelled protests and didn’t allow them to spread.
Reports of protests also poured in from Padshahi Bagh area of the uptown.
Meanwhile, locals of Safa Kadal, Gasi Mohalla and Noorbagh said the CRPF troopers sabotaged the power transformers, telephone lines and Cable TV wires.
“They went on rampage and also damaged windowpanes of residential houses. There weren’t any protests or stone pelting in the area,” a resident told Greater Kashmir over phone.
A civilian was wounded by CRPF troopers in Delina area of Varmul Thursday morning. Eyewitnesses told Greater Kashmir that Tariq Ahmed was hit by a bullet fired on the protesters by troopers moving in the Gypsy.
Protesters in Varmul town torched the SRTC office last night.
Meanwhile thousands of people including woman and children staged massive peaceful sit-in in old town Varmul.
Late in the evening, severe clashes broke on Khanpora bridge in which several persons were wounded. The clashes were continuing till late night.
Thousands of people took to streets in the peripheries of the town and pelted stones on police post at Warpora.
The police fired rubber bullets and teargas shells to disperse the protesters in which one person namely Irshad Ahmed Ganai was wounded.
After the curfew was lifted late evening, scores of youth took to streets in Chankhan, main chowk Sopur town and clashed with policemen and CRPF troopers.
The police resorted to teargas canisters to disperse the protesters in the town.
In Kupwara, protesters tried to set ablaze a CRPF vehicle in Hiri, but the troopers of nearby Army camp rescued the personnel from the protesters.
Massive demonstrations were also held in Trehgam area of Kupwara. Later the protesters marched towards Shumnag, native village of Khurusheed Ahmed who was killed by troops four days ago. The protesters also staged sit-in at Shumnag and late night protests also broke in Kulangam and Chogal area of Handwara.
TROOPERS ON RAMPAGE IN BANDIPORA:
Scores of people were injured and dozens of homes ransacked as paramilitary forces and police entered into the Nowpora locality of Bandipora this evening and beat up inmates and ransacked homes.
Locals told Greater Kashmir that all this was done without any provocation and those thrashed include women and children.
“They (Police and CRPF) fired tear shells inside our homes without any reason injuring two youths,” said Showket Ahmed.
Locals alleged that Police and CRPF men smashed windowpanes of local Masjid and beat people who were coming out after offering prayers.
As the news about the incident spread announcements were made over Masjid loud speakers, thousands of people including women and children came out of their homes from various localities including Plan, Hajam Mohalla, Nishat Mohalla, Naz Colony, Ajar and Main Town and held protest demonstrations.
As this report was being filed, reinforcements from Army were called in the area to quell the protests but people were assembling in main town to demonstrate against the police highhandedness.
Protests were also reported from Saderkoot, Ajas, Naidkhai, Safapora, Hajin and other adjoining areas of Sonwari.
Hundreds of people took to roads after CRPF men harassed some women and elderly persons in Naidkhai Sonwari.
ALL IS WELL: POLICE
A police spokesman said, “The situation in the Kashmir Valley remained by and large peaceful barring few incidents of curfew violations and stone pelting. In Pulwama a mob of more than 1500 people tried to break curfew near Degree College Pulwama. The police tried to persuade them not to break the curfew restrictions, however, the mob did not heed and indulged in heavy stone pelting. The police and security forces used lathicharge and tear smoke to disperse the mob but they continued heavy stone pelting on police and CRPF. A number of police and CRPF men got injured forcing to use fire. One person namely Shabir Ahmad Malik son of Abdul Aziz Malik resident of Lone Pora Pulwama was injured and was taken to SMHS hospital Srinagar where doctors declared him brought dead.”
Lastupdate on : Thu, 5 Aug 2010 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Thu, 5 Aug 2010 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Fri, 6 Aug 2010 00:00:00 IST
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