September 2016 News
Day59: People Hold 'Azaadi' Conventions; 100 More Injured5 September 2016
Srinagar: Following the calendar issued by the unified resistance leadership, people held 'Azaadi' conventions across Kashmir on Monday - 59th consecutive day of mass anti-establishment uprising in Kashmir. Over 100 more people were injured across Kashmir during pro-freedom protests and clashes. Early in the day, the all-party delegation led by Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh along flew to Jammu during his two day visit to J&K. He addressed media in Srinagar after meeting at least 300 people from 'different sections of society', government officials said. However, with no let-up in protests, over 100 civilians were injured in the clashes as CRPF, RR and police used tear gas canisters, PAVA, rubber bullets and pellets to disperse off the protests. Authorities had made heavy deployment of forces personnel in Srinagar and other places of the Kashmir Valley to 'maintain law and order' as shutdown called by the unified resistance leadership continued today. Official sources said that deployments were made in sufficient strength to maintain law and order in the Valley. Officials claimed no part of Kashmir Valley was under curfew, however, locals from Kupwara said that stringent curfew like restriction were in place to foil a pro-freedom rally in and around Lalpora Lolab area of Kupwara district in North Kashmir. Eyewitnesses said that intense clashes erupted in the area after forces tried to stop people from attending the rally. Locals alleged that mobile phone services, except the State-run BSNL, were suspended in the district. 'The incoming and outgoing call facility on all mobile phones except BSNL has been suspended,' a local from Kupwara said. More than 80 people were injured after forces fired pellets into a rally in south Kashmir's Kulgam district. The action came as Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh said that he has given PAVA shells as an alternative to pellet guns. Witnesses and reports said that forces ransacked the venue, barged into the houses in Zangalpora village during an overnight raid where they vandalized the property and thrashed the inmates. 'When we tried to take out the rally, the forces fired pellets to foil it,' said a local. He said that dozens of people were hit by pellets. Hospital sources informed that the injured were shifted to different Health Centres and hospitals including Kelam, Pahlou, Kulgam and Islamabad. Witnesses said that agitated protesters caused damage to the house of a police man (SPO Javaid Ahmad Shan) at Zangalpora. Locals said that Javaid was allegedly involved in 'inflicting atrocities' on people. After attacking the house, the protesters set it ablaze. Reports said that in an attempt to foil a scheduled pro-freedom rally in Srinagar's Palpora area, police and CRPF raided the venue and clashes erupted. Reports and local sources said that the local populace had planned a rally 'in honour' of Danish Sultan who had died when he jumped in Jhelum while CRPF was chasing a group of four youths in Parimpora area a few days ago. 'Many people had assembled in Football ground New Colony when police and CRPF men in huge numbers came and started firing tear gas shells and pellets,' a local said, 'they also resorted to aerial firing to scare people so that they abandon the rally.' Reports said that some people sustained injuries and were rushed to a Srinagar hospital. Hospital sources said that they received six pellet wounded persons from Palpora area. Indian Paramilitary troopers also caused massive damage to the residential houses and Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC) office building located at Rawatpora Baghat area of uptown Srinagar city. The building owned by SMC according to the employees was attacked with stones from everywhere and all the windowpanes were smashed by the 'unbridled' Central Reserve Police Force personnel. Ward Officer Muhammad Altaf Dar said that after a stone-pelting incident in the area, CRPF personnel went on rampage and they not only ransacked residential houses but also caused massive damage to the SMC office. 'It was hell like situation in the office. The employees ran for cover while CRPF men barged into the office, ransacked official documents and damaged furniture, electronic appliances, doors and windows. All the windowpanes of this 3 storey building were smashed by these men with stones, guns and sticks,' Dar said. Dozens of people, including few women, were injured after the government forces foiled a pro-freedom rally in Bagh-e-Mehtab - Machwa area of Srinagar. Reports and witnesses said that forces damaged the windowpanes of several residential houses and vandalized the venue of a proposed rally earlier today. When people tried to march towards the venue, forces fired several teargas shells to disperse the protesters. 'Several protesters were injured in the forces' action. Some women fainted due to tear smoke,' said a local. Later in the evening, intense clashes erupted in Rawalpora area of Srinagar following raids by forces. Reports of heavy damages by men in uniform also reached here. Clashes also erupted in Rainawari area of Srinagar while people offered Namaz on a road at Choderbagh. Reports of clashes between protesters and government forces reached from Jogilankar, Dugmohalla locality of Rainawari area. Many people were wounded in these clashes. Reports from Budgam said that police foiled the Khanpora pro-freedom rally and barred senior resistance leader and president Anjuman-e-Shar-i-Shian president Aga Syed Hasan from participating it. Aga Hasan was scheduled to address the said rally that was sponsored by his party. Police sealed all the roads leadings towards Khanpora Budgam and stopped people from proceeding towards the venue. Reports said that authorities imposed strict restrictions in Khanpora and its adjacent areas. However, a massive peaceful pro-freedom rally was held in Aarath village of Budgam where people from different schools of thought addressed people. In nearby Sozaith village, several people were injured when over 150 CRPF men raided Danjipora Mohalla. However, hundreds of people came out of their homes and chased them away. Reports of an Azaadi convention being hled in Khunmoh area of Srinagar also reached here. At least 12 people including two cops were injured when people confronted a police party who according to local's peaceful Gohiwa village of Pattan town and started distributing posters carrying names of alleged stone-pelters. 'The area was peaceful when policemen entered into the village. They not only distributed notices but also threatened people of dire consequences in case 'wanted' stone-pelters didn't report to police stations. This angered people who pelted stones on them while police retaliated with pellets and tear-smoke shells,' locals said. A peaceful pro-freedom rally was held at Eidgah Warpora area of Sopore town amid pro-freedom and anti-India slogans. 'Thousands of people from many villages of Zaingair attended the pro-freedom rally,' an eye witness said. The speakers urged upon the people to be peaceful while holding pro-freedom protests. Reports reaching from Kupwara said that several youths were injured in Trehgam when forces fired tear gas canisters and pellets. At least two were shifted out for advanced treatment. Meanwhile, reports coming from Lolab said that at least 50 civilians were injured in forces action. Late evening, one youth was injured when forces fired tear gas canisters and pellets in Baramulla when forces were searching for an alleged stone pelter. The situation in the valley continues to be tense amid recurring street protests, triggered by the July 8 killing of Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani. At least 74 civilians have been killed and nearly 12,000 injured in the weeks of the massive uprising, the deadliest since 2010 when some 120 people died in firing by police and paramilitary troopers.