Day 92: 12-Year-Old’s Killing Reignites, Protests, Violence

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SRINAGAR: A minor boy succumbed to pellet injuries here, sparking fresh clashes between protesters and government forces at various places in Kashmir today even as curfew continued in most parts of Srinagar.

Junaid Ahmad, who was hit by pellets in the head and chest at Saidapora in Safakadal police station area here on Friday, succumbed to injuries at SKIMS hospital at Soura late last Friday night, taking the death toll in the three-month-long unrest to 95.

Government forces fired shotgun pellets and tear gas as thousands of people carried the body of a 12-year-old boy killed overnight during an anti-India protest at Saidpora in the outskirts of Srinagar city.

Police and paramilitary soldiers fired warning shots, pellets and tear gas, fearing the procession could become a larger.

Some tear gas shells landed near the mourners carrying the body and on one occasion, the coffin slipped from the carriers triggering a chaos.

Clashes broke out as hundreds of young men hurled rocks at the troops while another group of mourners changed route to bury the dead. Clashes also spread to at least four other neighborhoods in downtown Srinagar, with scores reported injured.

 

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The boy identified as Junaid Ahmad, son of Ghulam Ahmad Akhoon, was critically injured Friday evening after he was hit by shotgun pellets all over his body. He died at a hospital overnight.

Residents said the boy was hit inside his home compound, some 9 meters (30 feet) from clashes between protesters and government forces. Police said he was part of the clashes.

Three more boys were received by SKIMS Soura for treatment. According to the hospital sources, one of the three injured from Saidapora was hit by pellets in back and head while two others were hit by tear gas shells.

One youth, identified as Moomin, has been hit by tear gas shell in his left leg and belongs to Aanchar area while as another youth, identified as Hilal Ahmad has been hit by tear gas shell and is a neighbour of slain Junaid.

Curfew remained in force in seven police station areas of the following death of a minor boy.

At least another 50 people were injured during dozens of clashes Friday as tens of thousands of Kashmiris protested against Indian rule.

The authorities had deployed forces in significant numbers to prevent the situation from spiralling out of control.

Meanwhile, complete shutdown was observed across the valley on consecutive 92nd day. Offices, shops, petrol pumps remained closed while public transport remained off the roads.

Pro-freedom protests continued across the Kashmir. The pro-freedom protests were held in Anantnag, Shopian, Barmulla, Kupwara, Budgam, Bandipora and Ganderbal.

At least 95 civilians have been killed while over 15000 others have been injured during ongoing unrest in Kashmir.

In south Kashmir’s Karimabad village Army held flag march after hundreds of locals had blocked the road.

Reports and witnesses said that as they Army arrived at the scène, people resorted to stone pelting. However, Army didn’t retaliate and left the area.

Government forces continued firing shotguns to disperse angry crowds despite repeated warnings from India's Home Ministry to minimize their use and widespread outcry against such weapons by local and international rights groups that have sought their ban. The pellets have killed dozens of people and left hundreds of civilians with serious eye injuries, with dozens losing their eyesight.

 

‘Most Wanted Stone Pelter’ held In Hajin

Police Saturday claimed that they arrested ‘most wanted stone pelter’ in north Kashmir’s district Bandipora. He has been lodged in police station Hajin.

Reports and witnesses said that Ishfaq Ahmad alias Jongu of SK Balla Hajin was hit by a bullet in his leg past month.

“He had received bullet injury past month during forces action against protestors. He had gone in hiding later on,” reports said.

On Saturday, he had arrived for medical checkup at Hajin sub-district hospital. “Police cordoned off the hospital and arrested him,” said eye witnesses.

 “He was most wanted stone pleter, responsible for instigating people for anti-government and pro-freedom protests. His arrest is a big catch for the Hajin police,” claimed a police officer.

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