At Least 3,000 injured in Pellet Firing

SRINAGAR: Around 51 per cent of the 5,800 civilians injured in Kashmir in the ongoing violence were hit by pellets and most of them were in constituencies represented by the ruling People's Democratic Party (PDP) in south Kashmir. Srinagar, Budgam and Ganderbal districts saw relatively fewer injuries.

Official data relating to 45 days of street violence in Kashmir, procured by The Hindu from 10 districts, showed that around 3,000 civilians were injured by pellets and 122 by bullets.

Fifty-five per cent — around 3,219 — of the injured were in south Kashmir’s four districts of Anantnag, Kulgam, Pulwama and Shopian.

Of the 16 Assembly seats in the four districts of south Kashmir, the PDP had won 11 in the constituencies considered the party’s bastion in the 2014 polls.

Anantnag district, where Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti won the Assembly by-poll in June this year, saw highest number of civilian injuries — 1,015.

Among the victims, 508 suffered pellet injuries, 41 of them in the eye. Forty-four suffered bullet injuries. The twin districts of Anantnag and Kulgam saw the highest number of bullet-injured civilians: 122.

Of the 68 deaths reported so far, more than 50 were in south Kashmir.

North Kashmir’s three districts of Baramulla (831 injured), Kupwara (786) and Bandipora (517) were equally on the edge.

At least 1,136 suffered pellet injuries in Baramulla and Kupwara districts.

Central Kashmir’s Budgam, with 246 injured civilians, Ganderbal with 126 and Srinagar with 146 were relatively better off.

As many as 972 civilians suffered injuries to the eye, mainly from being hit by pellets.

Srinagar, which was the epicentre of street protests in the 2010 civilian uprising, saw better control this time. However, five civilians were killed in firing by security forces in the city.

With around 2,600 security personnel also suffering injuries in the ongoing violent protests, the total number of injured now stands at more than 8,400: an average of around 175 every day since July 8 when violence erupted after the killing of militant leader Burhan Wani.

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