Tension mounts in Kashmir, eight more killed in violence

  • Peerzada Ashiq, Hindustan Times, Srinagar
  • |
  • Updated: Aug 03, 2010 01:07 IST

There was no let-up in protests for the fourth straight day on Monday in Kashmir. Eight more protesters were killed and several government buildings set ablaze by restive mobs that defied curfew in most parts of the valley.

A police spokesman said rampaging mobs defied the curfew in Pulwama, Anantnag, Kulgam in south Kashmir, Kupwara in north Kashmir and Budgam in central Kashmir.

“A health department building, horticulture office, tehsil office and railway station were set afire in central Kashmir’s Budgam area,” said the police spokesman. A police post was also burnt down.

Hundreds of protesters raising pro-freedom and anti-India slogans defied curfew in Budgam, 25 km away from Srinagar, and tried to march towards Chanapora as the Hurriyat call. Security forces fired in the air and lobbed tear-smoke shell to control the restive procession.

Security forces resorted to firing at more than dozen places to keep protesters at bay including uptown Srinagar, Chief Minsiter Omar Abdullah’s constituency Ganderbal, Baramulla, Pulwama, Anantnag, Shopian and Kupwara.

Four people were killed in the firing. The police did not reveal the name and age of the dead protesters.

“Security forces had to fire at several places in which four persons lost their lives, 67 persons, including nine civilians, 39 policeman and 28 CRPF jawan,” said the spokesman.

Unconfirmed reports, however, suggest five people were killed and dozens injured in security forces action on Monday. A boy, identified as Tariq Ahmad, who was injured on Saturday, breathed his last in the morning.

The death toll of protesters killing has risen to 20 since Friday and to 37 since June 11, when the killing of a schoolboy lead to a string of protests.

 

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