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15 injured in Kashmir protests

Fifteen persons, including three policemen, were injured as violent protests against the killing of two women rocked Shopian town and other areas in the Kashmir valley for the third day.

india Updated: Jun 01, 2009 18:30 IST

Fifteen persons, including three policemen, were injured as violent protests against the killing of two women rocked Shopian town and other areas in the Kashmir valley for the third day on Monday.

The violence erupted when police stopped hundreds of people from marching to the South Kashmir town, 52 kms from in Srinagar, from nearby villages demanding action against those behind the killing of the two women, official sources said.

Nelofar (22) and Asiya (17) were found dead on Saturday after they went missing from their orchard in Sophian on Friday evening, sparking off massive protests by locals who suspected the hand of armed forces personnel in the alleged rape and murder of the women.

Chief of separatist Dukhtaran-e-Millat (daughters of Nation) Syeda Asia Indrabi and her dozen party activists, who were marching towards Sohian, were taken into preventive custody in Pulwama district of South Kashmir, sources said.

Police fired teargas shells and used batons to disperse the crowds in Sophian town and in the ensuing battle, 12 persons, including three policemen, were injured, the sources said. The clashes took place at Shirmal, Zawoora, Maminder, Aliyalpora, Gagran and Batpora villages.

Mobs also pelted stones on police and paramilitary forces at over a dozen places in Srinagar and Tawheed chowk in Ganderbal district during the separatist-sponsored strike, prompting police to fire teargas shells and use batons. Three persons were injured in the clashes while several vehicles also suffered damage, the sources said.