October 2017 News

Braid Cutting Incidents Continue Unabated

15 October 2017
Rising Kashmir
Javid Ahmad

Srinagar: The incidents of braid cutting are continuing unabated with at least three more cases reported across Kashmir. Three more incidents of braid cutting of women were reported from Srinagar, Sopore and Ganderbal areas. In Srinagar's Lal Bazar area an unknown man allegedly tried to cut the hair of a woman in Botshah Mohalla. However the attempt failed but the victim reported to police that her golden ornament was snatched by the intruder. According to a police official a woman complained that she was busy in cleaning house when some unknown man managed to make entry. 'The family stated that unknown man failed in an attempt to cut braid of a woman as she raised hue and cry after which the alleged braid choppers disappeared from the scene but managed to snatch a golden chain,' said a police official. In Sopore, unidentified persons broke into the house of Mudasir Kanna at Khushal Matoo area and chopped off the hair of his 24-year-old wife. Following the incident, local residents hit roads and staged a protest against the authorities for failing to nab the culprits. The protests turned into clashes soon after police reached the scene. Witnesses said that people hurled stones on police which in retaliation fired tear smoke shells to disperse them. In Ganderbal protests broke out in Wanipora, Saloora, area of the district after unknown persons chopped off braid of a 7-th class student when she was studying at her home. As per reports local residents blocked Duderhama-Srinagar road near Qamaria Park that triggered traffic jam. Across Kashmir over 105 incidents of braid cutting have been reported so far with police yet to achieve any breakthrough. Police have also started to investigate these incidents 'on scientific pattern besides traditional methods of investigation.' In Batamaloo area of Srinagar, in order to maintain clear visibility people have started to install more lights on streets and courtyards to keep away the braid choppers. 'The threat perception is growing each day. We don't want to take any risk, so ensuring proper lights around houses is a possible measure,' said Manzoor Ahmad of S D colony, Batamaloo which has witnessed at least three incidents if braid cutting. Similarly, people in other parts of Kashmir area taking precautionary measures to keep braid cutters at bay. 'We keep lights on during night in our house so that if anyone attempts to intrude, he can be spotted easily. We also latch gates and windows of our houses,' said Bashir Ahmad from Baramulla. In addition, people in certain areas also arm themselves with knives, iron rods, sticks and cricket bats especially during night hours to fight braid cutters. Police have announced a reward of Rs 6 lakh for credible information about braid choppers. Special Investigations Teams (SITs) of police have also been formed in all districts to oversee these cases. Police also has sought public cooperation to check the crime as it has claimed that people and victims were not cooperating with investigating agencies.