Mobs Defy Curfew In Kashmir, 8 Killed

Mobs Defy Curfew In Kashmir, 8 Killed

2 August 2010
DNA
Ishfaq-ul-Hassan

Srinagar: Kashmir remained tense for the fourth consecutive day on Monday as eight more people, including a nine-year-old boy, were killed in clashes with security forces. Sixty-seven civilians, 39 policemen and 28 CRPF jawans were injured, and dozens of government buildings, police stations and CRPF camps were set on fire by curfew-defying mobs in the Valley. J&K chief minister Omar Abdullah sought from the Centre more paramilitary forces, especially Rapid Action Force troopers, to curb the street protests, and got a favourable response. Abdullah briefed a meeting in which all the members of the cabinet committee of security (CCS), including finance minister Pranab Mukherjee, home minister P Chidambaram, defence minister AK Antony and external affairs minister SM Krishna, were present. “The home minister (P Chidambaram) has assured me that he will look into these requirements,” Abdullah said later. Sources said the Centre has promised Abdullah full support, but urged him to get tough with the agitators. Meanwhile, anger is growing among the people in the Valley over the deaths. “A youth was killed when security forces opened fire in Kulgam. He was hit on the thigh, but could not be taken to hospital in time because the protestors did not allow the smooth movement of vehicles,” a police officer said. Security forces opened fire in Pulwama after a mob attacked their camp and a police post. The firing claimed the life of the youth while a man died in a stampede after a mob was chased away at Sangam Anantnag. Another youth was killed in Kralpora-Kupwara. “The mob chased the security personnel and tried to attack the CRPF camp. There was firing, which resulted in the death of the youth,” said a police spokesperson. “Security forces lathi-charged the protesters and even used teargas to disperse the stone-pelting mob.” Mobs defied curfew in Kakapora, Pulwama, Budgam, Anantnag, Kulgam and Kupwara. “They attacked the offices of the CMO and the tehsildar, the horticulture office and the tehsil office and set them on fire in Budgam,” the spokesman said. “They damaged the Budgam railway station and set a shed on fire. The miscreants pelted stones on the building of the Budgam police station. Mobs pelted stones in Galwanpora and Hyderpora.” Violence has spread to those areas which had voted en masse in the 2008 elections. “The situation is grave,” said a senior police officer. “I hope the army is called in, but the decision lies with the political establishment. Our job is to give inputs.”


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