Soldiers ‘beat’ shopkeepers in Kupwara, 6 injured

'Army Orders Internal Inquiry'

SHAHID RAFIQ

Kupwara, Nov 22: At least six shopkeepers were injured when soldiers of Army’s 6-Rashtriya
Rifles allegedly thrashed them at Tarathpora Vilgam in this frontier district last evening. The incident triggered protests in the area.
Reports said that soldiers of Hafrada Army camp last evening ordered the shopkeepers in Tarathpora market to down their shutters in the wake of some search operation in Ramhal area.
When the shopkeepers declined to stop their routine business activities, the soldiers allegedly resorted to indiscriminate thrashing. Six persons were injured in the Army action who were identified as Abdul Aziz Hajam, Muhammad Maqbool Mir, Abdul Gani Malik, Muhammad Qasim Bhat and Showkat Ahmad, all residents of Tarathpora. The injured were shifted to primary health centre Vilgam for treatment.
Today residents suspended their routine activities and closed all the shops and other business establishments against the alleged high-handedness by Army.
Protestors raised slogans and demanded stern action against the erring soldiers, registration of FIR and inquiry into the incident.
Deputy Commissioner Kupwara Sarmad Hafeez, DSP Handwara and Tehsildar Handwara reached the spot and pacified the protestors by assuring legal action against the erring soldiers. This pacified the protestors.
When contacted, SP Kupwara Muhammad Aslam said, “Soldiers have beaten some shopkeepers and a couple of them have been injured. Army has ordered an internal inquiry into the incident and the issue has been sorted out.”
Despite repeated attempts, Army officers could not be contacted for their version.

Lastupdate on : Thu, 22 Nov 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Thu, 22 Nov 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Fri, 23 Nov 2012 00:00:00 IST




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