Baramulla tense over arrests

Restrictions, stone pelting in many areas

SRINAGAR: Baramulla town remained tense on Friday, following detention of two youth under the controversial Public Safety Act (PSA).

The youth- identified as Abdul Qayoom Najar son of Gula Ahmad Najar of Bangla Bagh and Majid Nazir Shiekh son of Nazir Ahmad of Mohallla Jadeed-were booked under PSA and shifted to Kupwara Sub Jail on Wednesday.

Authorities closed all the bridges connecting old town with the civil lines area. The move according to reports was initiated after the police received inputs that some youth may resort to stone pelting on police after Friday prayers. “In order to contain the protests we closed all the important bridges connecting old town with the civil lines area. There are some elements who want to spoil the peaceful atmosphere of the town. We are closely watching their activities and they won’t be tolerated” police official said.

Eyewitnesses said that the police closed all the bridges and erected barricades in the area to restrict movement of people and transport. They didn’t allow us to cross over from old town to the civil lines area,” locals said. Eyewitnesses said that the clashes between police and agitating youths were witnessed at Cement Bridge and Chati Padshahi Bridge early on Friday despite restrictions imposed by the authorities. A large number of police and CRPF were deployed to disperse the protestors.

Meanwhile Police lobbed scores of tear gas shells when group of youth, soon after the Friday prayers, appeared near Azad Gunj Bridge in Old Town and started pelting stones at them. The incident created panic in the area following stone-pelting and tear gas shelling, shopkeepers downed their shutters and traffic movement was also disrupted.

Senior Superintendent of Police, Baramulla Zubair Ahmad Khan said that the overall situation in Baramulla remained under control. He however said the police would continue look into the cases of stone pelting and the people thereby involved in the same. “We have arrested some youth who are involved in stone pelting incidents. Some more people may be arrested,” he said. “We are identifying stone pelting youth and they will be booked under law,” he added. 

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