The Central Reserve Police Forces (CRPF) on Friday suspended one of its men for shooting pellets at an ambulance driver in Srinagar in the violence-torn Kashmir Valley, under curfew for 42 straight days now.
The decision came within hours of the incident as security forces battle unrest in the Valley, where 66 people have been killed and thousands injured in clashes with troops.
“Police are investigating the matter but departmental action has been taken against sub-inspector PS Yadav for the incident,” CRPF inspector general Atul Karwal said.
The driver, who was on his way to the SMHS hospital, was hit by pellets on Thursday night but managed to drive despite a bone fracture, said a doctor.
The government has been asked by activists and political rivals to revisit the use of these guns to disperse protesters who have been mobbing the streets after Hizbul Mujahideen militant Burhan Wani was killed in an encounter on July 8.
Stepping up the pressure, the separatists have called for a social boycott of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) leaders.
On Wednesday night, protesters allegedly attacked the house of Mohammad Yousuf Bhat, a legislator from Shopian, and set ablaze his servant quarter. The PDP leader was not at home at the time.
This was the second such attack this month. On August 2, Jammu and Kashmir education minister Naeem Akhtar’s residence was attacked with petrol bombs. The minister, who lives in his official bungalow, was not present at the house.
Sources said protesters attacked Bhat’s house to protest the excessive use of force during night raids in Mimender area of Shopian. They pelted stones at Bhat’s house and attacked the securitymen guarding it.
The separatists have extended their strike to August 25 and asked people to visit families of those killed in the unrest and prepare lists of such families.
They have also asked people to write to all MLAs, MLCs and ministers from “pro-Indian” political parties to resign from the government and party positions.
Residents on Thursday complained that police stopped vehicles carrying essential supplies from entering Srinagar.
Authorities have denied issued instructions to oil companies to stop distribution of fuel to the dealers. Officials said oil companies, including Hindustan Petroleum, Bharat Petroleum and Indian Oil, temporarily suspended the supply because of Raksha Bandhan.