Several injured despite curfew in Kashmir
Posted on July 20, 2013 by Daily excelsior

AMARANATH: The Holy Ice statue of Lord Shiva.

AMARANATH: Shiva Ling (The Holy Ice statue) Lord Shiva.

July 19:  The Border Security Force (BSF) today vacated its Dharam camp in Gool-Sangaldan area of Ramban district after yesterday’s attack by the mob in which four civilians were killed and 43 others including BSF and police personnel were injured while police today registered six FIRs—three each at Gool and Ramban police stations on the killings, injuries and rioting etcAuthorities suspended pilgrimage to holy cave shrine of Baba Amarnath ji from Jammu today in view of protests by the people on Jammu-Srinagar National Highway. The yatra will remain suspended tomorrow also from Jammu. A decision to this effect was taken by the authorities tonight due to prevailing conditions in the Valley.All four people, who were killed in yesterday’s firing by the security forces at Dharam, were buried in their native villages in Gool-Sangaldan this morning amid tight security arrangements.
Meanwhile, State Cabinet that met in Srinagar this morning under the chairmanship of Chief Minister Omar Abdullah condemned “excessive use of force’’ in Gool and extended condolences to bereaved families and sympathies with those injured in firing incident.The Cabinet extended ex-gratia of Rs 5 lakh each to the next of kin of those killing in the firing. It sanctioned one Government job to each family, who lost their members in the firing.Over two dozen persons were injured in clashes between protesters and police as various towns of Kashmir remained under curfew to prevent flare up of trouble due to Gool incidents. Curfew in Kashmir was likely to continue tomorrow.IGP Jammu Zone, Rajesh Kumar told Excelsior this evening that situation in entire Jammu region remained peaceful though the people held protests at various places after Friday prayers.
“Barring minor incidents at Doda and Bhaderwah, situation in entire Jammu region was peaceful and well under control. Nowhere, police had to use force against the mob, which dispersed peacefully including Gool and Sangaldan, where four victims were buried peacefully. Protesters at all the places in Jammu region dispersed peacefully,’’ Mr Kumar said.The IGP Jammu said there was no curfew in any part of Jammu region today including Ramban though adequate security arrangements had been made to prevent situation from going out of control. Outgoing Deputy Commissioner, Ramban Shyam Vinod Meena had imposed curfew in Ramban at 5 pm yesterday after large-scale rioting by the mob.Mr Kumar added that six FIRs—three each at Gool and Ramban police stations have been registered for killings, injuries and rioting.
Official sources said the FIR against SHO Gool Sub Inspector Mohammad Fazal Wani and BSF have been registered at Gool police station under Sections 302 and 307 RPC. Another FIR was registered against the mob for indulging in rioting.Three FIRs of rioting have been registered at Ramban police station, where mob had indulged in large-scale violence torching and damaging the Government property including the Deputy Commissioner Ramban’s office and resident and several Government vehicles.Sources said the FIRs under Section 302, 307 and 295 RPC have been lodged on the basis of complaints submitted by the people at Gool police station and their fate would be decided during the course of investigations. In Ramban police stations, FIRs have been lodged under Sections 353, 332 and 147 RPC etc for rioting.
The BSF has also decided to lodge a FIR with Gool police against the mob, which attacked the camp of 76 battalion at Dharam yesterday and tried to storm inside with intentions to loot their weapons, BSF sources said.IG BSF Rajiv Krishna had said yesterday that security forces had opened firing after rampaging mob tried to storm the BSF camp to loot their weapons.The BSF jawans today vacated their Dharam camp, about 48 kilometers from Ramban district under the jurisdiction of Gool police station and joined their other formations.“The BSF has been replaced by police,’’ sources said.
The BSF’s 76 battalion had been deployed at Gool and other areas for protection of railway construction works including tunnel, which were being constructs from Reasi to Banihal. Sources said the BSF vacated the camp in view of yesterday’s tension in the area. They added that local police has been deployed in adequate strength in Dharam to keep a watch on law and order situation.All four civilians killed in yesterday’s firing by security forces were buried at their native towns in Gool and Sangaldan between 10 am to 11 am today. A large number of people joined the burial, which was performed peacefully.
Sources said situation in Gool-Sangaldan was well under control though it was a bit tense. After Friday’s prayers at Gool, majority of people dispersed peacefully but some of them held a demonstration shouting slogans. They returned to their villages after peaceful protests for a couple of hours.Meanwhile, authorities today ordered suspension of pilgrimage to holy cave shrine of Baba Amarnath ji from Bhagwati Nagar Yatri Niwas as a preventive measure as the mob had blocked Jammu-Srinagar National Highway at various places between Chanderkoot to Banihal in protest against the killings.The yatris proceedings towards base camps of Baltal and Pahalgam directly were also stopped at various places.Normal traffic on Jammu-Srinagar National Highway plied only up to Batote in view of blockades at Ramban, Ramsu and Banihal by the protesters. While the people lifted blockade of the highway at all other places around 3 pm, it continued in Banihal till 5 pm.The Amarnath yatris were also not allowed to return to Jammu from Baltal and Pahalgam base camps in view of disturbances on the Highway.
A large number of yatris were stranded at Bhagwati Nagar Yatri Niwas and other private places due to blockade of the highway.In Doda town, police lathicharged mob, which was trying to forcibly close down shops of minorities. The mob dispersed but continued protests and took out processions at various other places.In Bhaderwah town of Doda district, the protesters tried to shut down shops of minorities but the situation was immediately brought under control. The protesters took out procession in various parts of Bhaderwah, Doda, Kishtwar, Batote, Ramban, Ramsu, Banihal and all other areas of erstwhile Doda district in the morning and later after Friday prayers in protest against Gool incident.In Jammu, the people took out processions and held demonstrations after Friday prayers at Bhatindi, Talab Khatikan, Gujjar Nagar and various other areas in protest against desecration act and killings of four civilians. The Imams addressed the gathering at all places denouncing the killings and sacrilegious act. They demanded action against the accused. The processions and gatherings at all places dispersed peacefully.
In all cities, towns and villages of Samba, Kathua, Udhampur, Reasi, Rajouri and Poonch districts, the people gathered after Friday prayers, held peaceful protests and took out processions shouting slogans denouncing the Gool incident and demanding action against the accused.Bandh was also observed by the people at several areas as a mark of protest against the killings.However, no untoward incident was reported from any place during procession and protests.In Poonch and Rajouri districts, authorities had tightened security right from the morning to ensure that there was no trouble during protests and processions after Friday prayers.
People took out a protest rally in Kargil and condemned the Gool incident. The rally taken after Friday prayers passed through various areas of Kargil town.Apprehending protests against the firing in Gool, authorities today imposed curfew in Srinagar and major towns across Kashmir valley while people at several places defied curfew restrictions and clashed with police during which over 3 dozen persons including police and CRPF men were injured.Two youth were injured when security forces opened fire while chasing stone-pelting protestors in Ganderbal district of Central Kashmir.A large group of people took to streets after Friday prayers at village Kurhama Ganderbal to protest against the killings in BSF firing. Police resorted to pellet gun firing and teargas shelling to disperse the protestors who turned violent and resorted to stone-pelting.As the situation worsened, the security forces resorted to aerial firing to restore law and order during which two persons identified as Mohammad Yusuf Hajam and Zahoor Ahmad were injured. They were admitted to SK Institute of Medical Sciences in Soura, Srinagar.
Clashes between police and protesters were also reported from Dudarhama, Beehama, Kangan and Manigam in Ganderbal district.At Manigam in Ganderbal after dawn prayers locals made announcement through public address system of a Masjid and appealed people to come on roads to stage protests against arrest of two youth of the village.The residents came out in protest and fought pitched battles with security forces. Police fired tear smoke and charged batons on the protesters to disperse them.
A police spokesman said that the situation so far is under control throughout Kashmir Valley, though some stone pelting incidents have been reported. “Miscreants pelted stones in Kurhama, Ganderbal. Two miscreants were injured. They have been referred to the hospital and their condition is stable,” he said.
Clashes between protestors and security forces were reported from several other parts of the Valley including interior Srinagar. At Nowshahra, two policemen were injured when a group of youth pelted stones at them. They were removed to SKIMS hospital for treatment.Minor clashes were also reported from many areas of Srinagar city including SD Colony Batamaloo, Magarmal Bagh, Tengpora, Bemina and Kawdara.Clashes were reported from Old Town Baramulla, Pattan, Palhallan, Sopore, Handwara, Kupwara, Bandipora, Papchan, Naid Khai, Sumbal in North Kashmir.Scores of youth gathered at Khanpora Bridge and Cement Bridge and pelted stones on security forces who retaliated with teargas shelling. In Azad Gunj, Baramulla two security men were injured in the stone pelting.
Minor stone pelting incidents were also witnessed in Langate. However, later on, agitated youth dispersed peacefully.Four persons were injured in police action at Naid Khai area of Sumbal in Bandipora after clashes broke out between protesters and security forces. All the injured were later hospitalized.
Clashes were also reported from Redwani, Qaimoo, Khunmoh, Qazigund, Dooru, Levdora, Gagren, Shopian, Rajpora, and Pulwama in South Kashmir. Four policemen and half a dozen protesters were injured in Qaimoo.In Qazigund, 14 persons including 6 policemen were injured when security forces used force to disperse protesters who were protesting against Gool killings.Curfew was imposed in all areas of Srinagar, Budgam, Ganderbal and Bandipora districts and Shopian, Pulwama, Kulgam, Anantnag, Bijbehara and Sopore towns.
Hurriyat Conference has called for a three-day shutdown in the Valley and in order to maintain peace restrictions will continue in most parts of Kashmir valley for Saturday.In Srinagar, authorities did not allow Friday prayers at historic Jamia Masjid. The Hurriyat Chairman, Mirwaiz Omar Farooq condemned the curfew restrictions during which people were not allowed to offer Friday prayers. The congregational prayers at majority of the Masjids were not allowed due to apprehension of protests.
Mirwaiz, Syed Ali Shah Geelani and several other separatist leaders were put under house arrest to prevent their public appearance as a precautionary measure.Keeping in view the strict restrictions in the Valley, district magistrate Srinagar has ordered that identity cards of media and essential services people shall be treated as curfew passes.Meanwhile, Kashmir University and Central University of Kashmir have postponed all the examinations scheduled to be held on July 20 (Saturday).