16 Injured In Kupwara Clashes

12 February 2015
Kashmir Observer

Kupwara: Amid spontaneous shutdown, at least 16 people including 12 cops sustained injuries during violent clashes between protesters and government forces in Kupwara district of north Kashmir Thursday. Protests rocked the northern town against the death of a local man allegedly in police custody a day earlier. The protesters also attacked several government offices as well as an office of a pro-India political party and torched a police Langar. The senior officials have appealed people to maintain calm. The mysterious death of 'murder accused' Nazir Ahmad Mughal, son of Abdul Rehman, an adopted son of Bahadur Khan aged 32 years of Gujjar Pati, Zirhama, Kupwara sparked violent protests in Kupwara town and its adjoining areas. People alleged that he died in police custody and are demanding impartial probe. Town and its adjoining areas also observed a complete shutdown on Thursday with violent incidents of stone-throwing in many areas including Bye-pass Road, Kupwara Bridge, DC office, SP office and Aawura. Witnesses said that protesters attacked the offices of the DC and SP Kupwara. They said the protesters in Aawura attacked a police post and torched police Langar. Police resorted to heavy teargas shelling at all the places to disperse the angry protesters. Four civilians' sustained injuries during violent clashes in Aawura, witnesses said. At Zirhama, protesters made an unsuccessful attempt to torch a police post. The protesters ransacked the local office of BJP at Bye-pass in the district and damage the property. They also burnt the party flags. The SP Kupwara, Rahul Malik, told reporters that 12 policemen including a DySp and Additional SP were injured during different incidents of stone-pelting in the district. Appealing people to maintain calm, the DC Kupwara Kumar Rajiv Ranjan, said a magisterial probe has already been ordered. 'I am myself looking into the case,' the DC said, adding, anyone found guilty would be punished according to law. Police had said the man was called by police post Zirhama for questioning in connection with a murder case. The man had complained of abdomen pain and was immediately taken to hospital for treatment on Tuesday, police said. 'Nazir later fled from the hospital on the excuse of attending the nature's call in the hospital', a senior police officer had said and added the man was found dead in the hospital premises on Wednesday. 'Instantly the search was conducted to trace him out and this morning his body was found near the compound wall of District Hospital,' the officer had said on Wednesday. Meanwhile, officials said in view of prevailing situation, restrictions under section 144 would be imposed in Kupwara tomorrow on Friday.