Police firing triggers stampede, 7 injured
2 April 2001
The Hindustan Times
Srinagar: At least seven people were injured in police firing during a religious procession and in the stampede that followed in Badgam district of central Kashmir today, official sources said here. The procession, taken out by members of a Muslim sect in connection with Muharram, was fired upon by personnel of special operations group (SOG) of Jammu and Kashmir police at Magam Chowk, 24 kms from here, the sources said. The trouble erupted when a vehicle carrying SOG personnel came to a halt on noticing the procession. The cops fired warning shots to disperse the procession triggering a stampede in which five people were injured, the sources said. Minutes later, the people assembled again to lodge their protest against the police firing, they said, adding the SOG personnel again fired warning shots injuring two persons, Zafar Ali Khan and Akhtar Hussain. Both were admitted to SMHS hospital here. People, including women and children, took to the streets protesting the police firing sparking tension in the area. The protesters raised anti-SOG slogans and demanded action against the policemen involved in the firing incidents. The sources said the situation was tense but under control. Meanwhile, reports of peaceful processions in connection with Muharram were received from different parts of the valley.