Gool Killings: Curfew, clashes continue across Kashmir

Forces Open Fire On Protesters In Qaimoh; 3 Women Among 30 Injured In Clashes; Dozens Of Youth Arrested

SHABIR IBN YUSUF/KHALID GUL

Srinagar, July 20: At least 30 persons including three women were injured in protests and clashes that erupted at several places in Kashmir on Saturday against Gool killings even as police and paramilitary forces fired on a protest demonstration in Qaimoh area of south Kashmir. Kashmir reeled under curfew for the second consecutive day and separatist leaders continued to remain under arrest.

SOUTH KASHMIR:
Curfew remained imposed in all major towns of south Kashmir on the second consecutive day even as protests and clashes erupted in many areas. Five people including three women were injured when forces fired on a protest demonstration in Khudwani area of Qaimoh in Kulgam district. Curfew was clamped in Kulgam, Qaimoh and Qazigund towns of Kulgam district. However, violent clashes erupted in Khudwani area for the second running day.
“In the evening, hundreds of people including men, women and children assembled near Jamia Ahlihadith, Khudwani, and carried out pro-freedom demonstrations. However, police and CRPF men used force and resorted to firing, injuring five of them including three women. A mother-daughter duo was among the injured.
The injured were identified as Shahnawaz Ahmad Shah S/O Ghulam Muhammad of Ghati Redwani, Shaheena D/o Akbar Wani of Khudwani, Haneefa W/O Qayoom Dar of Khudwani, Rukhsana D/o Qayoom Dar of Khudwani and Rouf Ahmad Kumar S/o Muhammad Ramzan of Laram Ganjipara.
The injured were shifted to district hospital, Anantnag. “All the injured have fire arm injury and are being treated here,” said a doctor attending them. “Shaheena has been hit by a bullet in chest.”
“We were protesting peacefully but forces resorted to indiscriminate firing,” said a protester. The news of injuries further infuriated the protesters. Protests and clashes were on in Qaimoh, Khudwani and Redwani when reports also came in. Several cops were also injured in the clashes.
Violent clashes had erupted in Qaimoh and its adjacent areas including Khudwani and Redwani on Friday too. Dozens including police and CRPF men had sustained injuries while one civilian identified as Zahid Ahmad Guroo sustained bullet injury in his leg. He is being treated at SKIMS   and his condition, according to doctors, is stable.
In the highway town of Qazigund in Kulgam district, additional deployment was pressed in to enforce strict curfew after Friday’s violent clashes. Dozens of civilians had sustained injuries in the clashes; two of the civilians were hit by bullets while many others had received rubber bullet, pellet and tear canister injury. Fifteen policemen and five CRPF men were also injured in stone pelting even as protesters attacked a CRPF camp and tried to set it ablaze.
Meanwhile, doctors have termed the condition of two civilians, Jehangir Ahmad Mir and Munib Ahmad Bhat, as stable. They are being treated at SKIMS and district hospital Anantnag.
Curfew was also enforced in Pulwama, Pampore, Awantipora, Kakpora areas of Pulwama district. However, clashes between forces and protesters erupted at Prichu, Tahab and Newa villages and in some areas of main town.
In Tral, massive pro-freedom demonstrations were held at several places. People were also demanding release of youth detained by police after Friday’s protest.
Curfew was also clamped in Shopian town. However, protests and clashes rocked several areas of district including Gagran, Aliyalpora and Bonigam villages. Protesters attacked CRPF camp at Gagran who retaliated by lobbing tear gas shells.
In Shopian town, people defied curfew and held protests at several places. Clashes erupted at DC office road, Bonibazar, hospital road. They also pelted stones at police station. People of Bonibazar, Khar Mohalla alleged that police and CRPF went berserk again in the area and smashed the window panes of their houses and parked vehicles.
“Forces lobbed numerous tear gas shells, some of which landed inside our houses,” locals said.
In Islamabad town, reports said that a strict curfew was clamped.
“Police and paramilitary forces wearing riot gears and armed with sophisticated weapons were guarding the streets and lanes and by lanes of old town as well as civil lines areas of Khanabal-Pahalgam (KP) road and no one was allowed to venture out,” witnesses said.
“The forces had erected barricades and concertina wires at several places.”
Clashes, however, erupted in several areas of old town late in the evening when the deployment was reduced. “The forces barged into several houses in Reshi Bazar and beat up the inmates,” locals said.
Curfew remained imposed in Bijbehara and Mattan towns also. Restrictions were imposed in Dooru and Achabal also after protests and clashes erupted there on Friday.
Five youth including two brothers were arrested from South Kashmir’s Kakapora area of Pulwama district during nocturnal raids.
According to reports, police arrested five youth from Kakapora area during nocturnal raids. They have been identified as Aijaz Ahmed Lone, Showkat Ahmed Lone sons of Ghulam Mohidin Lone, Pir Imtiyaz Ali son of Ali Mohammad residents of Kakapora, Jan Mohammad and Fayaz Ahmed, residents of Naman Pulwama.
A police official said that there are at least 12 more youth who are wanted in different stone pelting incidents. “These youth have fled from their homes and they will be apprehended soon,” he said.

NORTH KASHMIR:
Amid restrictions imposed by the authorities in Baramulla town for the second consecutive day, clashes between police and protesting youths were witnessed throughout the day on Saturday in the town.
Scores of youths this morning gathered at the cement bridge and at the Khanpora bridge and start protesting against the Ramban incident. As the protesting youths were prevented from crossing the bridge, they start throwing stones at the police and CERPF personnel deployed at the bridges.
Police fired several tear smoke shells to disperse the agitating youths and the intermittent clashes continued throughout the day.
Earlier, police in a bid to stop the protesting youths from crossing over to civil lines area, closed all the major bridges connecting old town with the civil lines area by putting barricades on the bridges.
In Palhalan area of Baramulla district, despite additional deployment of police and CRPF, Intermittent clashes were witnessed in the interior areas. Police fired several tear smoke shells to disperse the agitating youths. However, no one was injured during the clashes.
Life in frontier district of Kupwara remained paralyzed for the second consecutive day on Saturday.
All the shops, business establishments and government offices remained closed and roads wore a deserted look as traffic was off the roads.
There was heavy deployment of police and paramilitary forces in Kupwara, Handwara, Langate, Trehgam, Kralpora, Vilgam and Lolab towns.
Forces erected barricades at several places and did not allow movement of vehicles.
Reports of complete shutdown were also received from Sopore town of Baramulla district.
Meanwhile, Pattan police arrested at least 9 youth including a 14 year old student and son of a police officer during nocturnal raids for their alleged role in stone pelting.
Station House Officer Pattan, Mehboob Bandey, told a local news agency that during different nocturnal raids police in Pattan area arrested at least 9 youth. “They have been identified as Manzoor Ahmad son of Ghulam Mohi-u-Din War, Nayeem Ahmad Yatoo son of Abdul Majeed Yatoo (Raipora Palhallan), Marouf Ahmad son of Ghulam Hassan Rather (ASI) resident of Shumlaran Chandoosa Baramulla, Firdous Ahmad son of Mohmmad Akbar Baba (Goshibugh Pattan), Nazir Sultan Rather (Buchoo Pattan), Zubair Karim Chopan, Suhail Sultan Dar, Umar Hassan Dar (Renjee Pattan), Nazir Ahmad Sheikh son of Habibullah Sheikh (Parmohalla Pattan),” he said.
The police official said that the accused are involved in damaging police vehicles and assaulting police officers on duty. “We have registered cases against all of them vide FIR number 182/2013 under section 148, 149, 336, 332, 307, 427 RPC and we are going to produce challan against these accused,” he said.

CENTRAL KASHMIR:
Curfew remained imposed in entire Srinagar district. Clashes erupted in several parts of Srinagar early morning that included Batamaloo, Tengpora, Khanyar and Nowhatta. The forces foiled the attempts of protests at several places in old Srinagar.
Reported said that groups of youth, raising pro-freedom slogans, took to streets in Barzulla area Saturday afternoon. They were intercepted by columns of police and CRPF. Reports said that forces burst tear smoke shells and cane-charged the protestors. The latter, in return, pelted stones on the forces triggering clashes in which at least four persons were injured.
Reports said that later additional reinforcement arrived in the area to contain the situation. The pitched battles continued for at least two hours.
In Khanyar area of Srinagar, reports said that hundreds of youth took to streets soon after morning prayers and held strong protests demonstration against the Gool killings. However they were intercepted by forces leading to violent clashes. The protestors and forces fought pitched battles, however they were contained after the clamping down of curfew in the area.
Agitated protestors smashed the windowpanes of two CRPF vehicles at Nawab Bazar area of Srinagar Saturday morning. Eyewitnesses said that protestors damaged both the vehicles. Soon after this incident CRPF personnel went berserk and ransacked dozens of residential houses. Stray incidents of stone pelting were reported from Sabzi Market Soura and Zainakot.
Locals alleged that CRPF smashed the windowpanes of scores of houses and even did not spare the vehicles parked in yards and roads.
Forces resorted to lathi-charge and burst tear smoke shells to disperse the protestors. The youth of Kurhama, Barusa and Check Yangoora erected barricades on Srinagar–Leh highway and staged protests.
The protesting youth pelted stones on the forces, triggering clashes. The youth fought dingdong battles with the forces and engaged them till evening.
After mid-day prayers, youth assembled outside Masjids at Repora and Kondbal and chanted pro-Islamic and pro-freedom slogans. However forces swung into action and chased  them away.
After dawn prayers when the CRPF started its deployment in highway town Kangan to impose restriction, youth appeared near power house and pelted stones on them. In retaliation, CRPF swung into action and pushed them back to their localities. After the incident, forces imposed strict restriction on the public movement which continued for the whole day.
Reports of stone pelting were also received from Sindh bridge Kangan where youth tried to enter the curfew bound Kangan town and forces deployed on the bridge prevented them from proceeding ahead.
However youth resisted and pelted stones on the forces .They were later chased away by the forces. The residents of Kangan and Kondbal alleged that forces smashed window panes of residential houses.
Reports said that angry youths hurled petrol bombs towards forces during clashes at Barusa late evening after which forces used pellets on the protesters. Qaisar Ahmad Bhat of Barusa received injuries in his thigh and he was referred to SKIMS Srinagar.
At Humhama in central Kashmir’s Budgam district, youth resorted to heavy stone pelting at police which left a senior police official, SHO Zahoor Ahmed, critically injured. CNS said that agitated youth attacked the cavalcade of Peoples Democratic Party Patron Mufti Mohammad Syed when he was on his way to his residence from Srinagar Airport. Due to timely intervention of police, the cavalcade managed to pass off, however some windowpanes of vehicles got damaged in the attack.
Reports said that security guards of former Chief Minister exercised restraint and did not retaliate. A police official while confirming the incident said that motorcade of PDP patron was attacked by some miscreants, however the timely action of police kept the protestors at bay.

KARGIL:
On the call of Anjuman Jamiyat Ullama (the Islamic Society Kargil), Kargil Saturday observed a complete shutdown. All the business establishments, government offices, schools and banks remained closed. The strike call was supported by the Students Education Movement Kargil.
The bandh call was given to condemn and to protest the Gool killings by BSF and the alleged desecration of Holy Quran.
Sheikh Asgar Zakiri, Member Ullama Council ISK, on behalf of the Ullama Council condemned the desecration of the Holy Quran and requested the State as well as Central Government to take immediate action keeping in view the sentiments of the Muslim community in general and humanity in particular.
Sheikh Hussain Muqadas talking to media, terming the Gool killings as a cowardice act and excessive use of power by armed force and said that such kind of incident is a blow to the democratic structure of India and to secure the secular image and democracy in the country government should immediately take action against the culprits behind these incidents.
Haji Anayat Ali, President Youth Wing ISK, said that people from all walks of life in Kargil supported the bandh call and also supported the condemnation of the cowardice action of the BSF and the desecration of Holy Quran which is an unbearable act for any human being.
He further added that desecration of any holy book of any religion is an unacceptable act which should be condemned by all sections of life. Earlier yesterday, IKMT Kargil organized a protest rally in Kargil after the Friday prayers.

SEPARATISTS UNDER DETENTION:
Many separatist leaders including chairmen of both factions of Hurriyat Conference, Syed Ali Geelani and Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, remained under house arrest while JKLF Chief Yasin Malik and Democratic Freedom Party chairman Shabir Ahmad Shah remained in police custody on Saturday.
“Chairman Hurriyat Conference Mirwaiz Umar Farooq remained under house arrest at his Nigeen residence,” a statement by the amalgam said here.
Besides Mirwaiz, other leaders of the amalgam including Aga Syed AL-Hassan Al-Mousvi, Moulana Abbas Ansari, Moulana Masroor Ansari, Mukhtar Ahmad Waza, Advocate Shahid-ul-Islam, Zaffar Akhbar Bhat, Salim Geelani and Chaudary Shaheen were confined to their residence, the statement added.
Nayeem Ahmad Khan, chairman of Jammu Kashmir National Front, an ally of Hurriyat Conference (M), also remained under house arrest, party spokesman said.
There was no relief either for chairman Hurriyat Conference (G), Syed Ali Geelani, who also remained under house arrest.
Meanwhile, Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front chairman Yasin Malik and three of his aides remained under police custody, a spokesman of the party said.
He said Malik and the aides including Noor Mohammad Kalwal, Basher Ahmad Kashmiri and Ghulam Mohammad Dar, who were arrested at Lal Chowk Thursday, remained in police custody for third consecutive day. They were arrested while protesting against Gool massacre.
Democratic Freedom Party also condemned the continuous detention of party chairman Shabir Ahmad Shah and Muhammad Yasin Ataye.

POLICE VERSION:
Inspector General Police, Kashmir, Abdul Gani Mir told KNS that situation remained by and large peaceful in the Valley on Saturday. “Around 8 civilians, 31 police and CRPF men have been injured in stone pelting incidents at different places,” he said.
WITH SHEIKH NAZIR, SHAHID RAFIQ, ALTAF BABA, SHOWKAT DAR, MEHBOOB KHAN

Lastupdate on : Sat, 20 Jul 2013 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Sat, 20 Jul 2013 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Sun, 21 Jul 2013 00:00:00 IST




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