Curfew Keeps Lid On Kashmir

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SRINAGAR: Kashmir Valley was placed under indefinite curfew Saturday morning and restrictions were placed on internet services and satellite news channels as precautionary step by the state government apprehending a backlash in the wake of the hanging of Mohammed Afzal Guru.

Even as curfew had been imposed across Kashmir, at least 40 persons were injured in day long clashes. Police and paramilitary forces opened fire on protestors at Sopore and Baramulla. 

Earlier heavy deployment of paramilitary forces had been made in sensitive areas while downtown Srinagar was placed under strict curfew and restrictions were put in place across civil lines.

Deployment of Jammu and Kashmir Police and para-military forces began from 4 AM and as per the plan chalked out by Director General of state police Ashok Prasad in consultation with the Chief Minister, the entire spread of forces was completed by 5 AM in all the 10 districts.

As a precautionary measure, the bandwith for internet was decreased considerably thereby leaving the customers without any mobile internet.

Local cable operators have been told to suspend their operations immediately, sources here said. 

Soon after the news of Guru’s execution spread, thousands of villagers from Doabagh- the native village of Afzal Guru in Sopore– and its surrounding villages marched towards his home. The Police and Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel who had already sealed the village opened fire to prevent the protestors from entering the village. Eight persons were injured in the firing and subsequent chaos.

Late night report said the two critically injured are now out of danger as doctors operated upon them in SKIMS. The doctors said that the injured are being provided treatment and they have been successfully operated. Both had got the bullet injuries in legs.

Eleven persons injured in Sopore and Baramulla have been identified as Firdous Ahmad Buhroo s/o Ghulam Ahmad Buhroo R/o Dubgah Baramullah, Bilal Ahmad Gojri s/o Abdur Rehman Gojri R/o Drangbal Baramullah, Zahoor Ahmad s/o Ali Mohammad R/o Dubmgah, Irfan Ahmad s/o Fayaz Ahmad, Mushtaq Ahmad s/o Fazludin R/o Dubgah, Azlaan Ahmad s/o Fayaz Ahmad R/o Dubgah, Aamir Ahamd s/o Fayaz Ahmad R/o Old Town Baramullah, Nayeem Ahmad Sheikh s/o Mushtaq Ahmad R/o Watirgam Rafiabad, Fayaz Ahmad Bagwaan R/o Drangbal, Shankar Ahmad Zargar s/o Abdul Wayoom R/o Chandoosa Baramullah, Ajaz Ahmad Bagwaan s/o Mohammad Sidiq Drangbal,  Mohammad Ashraf s/o Abdul Wahab R/o Khanpora.

“We have received two  injured in our hospital who have received bullet injuries,” Medical Superintendent SKIMS Dr. Ajaz Mustufa said, adding the critically injured Firdous and Bilal have been operated and are out of danger. 

Attempts to break the curfew restrictions were made in Zainageer in Sopore, old Baramulla town and Khanpura on Baramulla-Uri highway in North Kashmir besides in Lower Munda in South Kashmir.

There were firing incidents in Khanpura, Zainageer and Hygam in Sopore in which four people were injured.

MLA from Langate in North Kashmir Engineer Rashid was detained as he led the protests in his constituency.

While confirming occurrence of “minor incidents of stone pelting and clashes”, Director General of Police, Ashok Prasad said the situation across Kashmir valley was under control.

On reports of injuries to some people in the clashes, the DGP claimed that most of the injured were policemen. “One of our constables has been critically injured and the injured were mostly policemen”, Prasad said said.

Chief Minister Omar Abdullah arrived here this morning from Jammu and chaired a high-level meeting to review the law and order situation shortly before the execution was to take place.  With inputs from KNS

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