The alleged ransacking of the residential houses and thrashing of inmates by force personnel at Kulpora village of this south Kashmir district last night sparked massive protests in the area on Thursday.
People took to the streets this morning and staged a protest against the alleged excesses. Raising pro- freedom slogans they also blocked the Anantnag-Kulgam road for hours.
According to the villagers- the force personnel barged into several residential houses of the village at around 12:00 in the midnight and went berserk. "They ransacked the house hold goods, smashed the window panes and mercilessly thrashed the inmates including women, children and elderly," they alleged.
They force personnel, locals alleged, also desecrated two local mosques and did not even spare those observing 10 day Aitiqaf period of Ramzan. The villagers said that they faced wrath after a non local driver was asked to leave the village. " There were several complaints against the said driver- including harassment of local women and him being involved in other immoral activities," the villagers said.
They villagers said also suspected that the driver was responsible for frequent crackdowns in Kulpora village. On this pretext the local Panchayat members Wednesday evening asked him to leave the village." The driver however, rebuked the Pachayat members and threatened them of dire consequences. ," the locals said.
They said that the driver called the force personnel and they forced their entry into the village. "The Panchayat members were the first target of the forces and later they thrashed everyone," the agitated villagers told Greater Kashmir.
Superintendent of Police (SP)- Kulgam- Muhammad Irshad, said the force personnel went to the village in defense of a non-local after he had an altercation with the locals. " The non local works as a driver with forces and they came to his rescue. However things turned ugly- when force personnel confronted the angry villagers," the SP said.
He said the case has been registered against the non local driver and law will takes its own course.
Defense spokesperson Lt Col. NN Joshi however, refuted the allegations. " Nothing of that sort has happened. However, I will still look into the matter," said Joshi.