A mob burnt two army vehicles and stoned an army camp in South Kashmir’s Shopian district in protest against the killing of a civilian on Saturday.
Local residents said armymen fired at three civilians early on Saturday without any provocation in Shopian’s Kellar area, 55 km south of Srinagar, killing one and injuring another.
The army admitted that the slain man, identified as Gulla Gujar, “was mistaken for a militant before being shot at”.
The army has constituted a high-level inquiry into the case.
“The army personnel killed the villager without any warning shots,” a protester alleged.
An army spokesman in Srinagar said its personnel had launched an operation in Chewen (in the Kellar) forest, based on intelligence inputs from the police on Friday night.
“A cordon was established at 2.30 am on the outskirts of the village where suspected terrorists were likely to come,” the spokesman said.
“Around 4.15 am on Saturday, three persons entered into the cordon from outside the village. On being challenged, they started running away, leading to our troops opening fire.”
Shopian Deputy Commissioner Abdul Majid Khanday said, “A murder case has been registered against the army.”
As people poured onto the street in protest, hurling stones and burning two army vehicles, three people were injured in retaliatory firing by troops.