May 2018 News

Kashmir Shutdown: CRPF Jawan Hurt In Grenade Attack By Militants

7 May 2018
Business Standard


New Delhi: Normal life came to a standstill in Kashmir on Monday on a call for shutdown by separatists to protest the killing of five civilians during clashes between protesters and security forces near the encounter site in Shopian district on Sunday. Police detained supporters of MLA Sheikh Abdul Rashid, who tried to stage a protest against civilian killings, near Civil Secretariat in Srinagar on Monday Jaint Resistance Leadership (JRL), an amalgam of separatist groups, spearheaded by Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Mohammad Yasin Malik, called for a complete strike to protest against the civilian killings during clashes with security forces following an encounter in which five militants, including an assistant professor from the Kashmir University, were killed. The separatists have called for a sit-in against the killings outside the Civil Secretariat, which opened on Monday as part of the traditional 'Darbar Move' practice, in Srinagar. While Geelani and Mirwaiz have been placed under house arrest, Malik has been taken into preventive custody since Saturday. Schools, colleges and other educational institutions have been closed as a precautionary measure to prevent any law and order situation, officials said. The Kashmir University has cancelled all academic activity for two days and postponed the exams scheduled to be held today. Shops and other business establishments remained closed while public transport remained off the roads due to the strike call. The authorities have imposed restrictions on the movement of people in seven police station areas of the city - Maharaj gunj, Rainawari, Khanyar, Nowhtatta, Safa Kadal, Maisuma and Kralkhud - as a precautionary measure. Restrictions have also been imposed in Pulwama and Shopian districts of south Kashmir while security forces have been deployed in strength across the Valley for maintaining law and order, a police official said. The official said the situation across the Valley is peaceful so far. Train services from Banihal to Baramulla have been suspended while Internet services in mobile devices continued to remain suspended for the third day today. Here are top 10 developments on Kashmir shutdown: 1. CRPF jawan hurt in grenade attack by militants: A CRPF jawan was injured in a grenade attack by militants in Pulwama district of Jammu and Kashmir today, police said. The ultras hurled a grenade at the security forces at Tahab in Pulwama district this afternoon, resulting in injuries to the jawan, a police spokesman said. He added that the injured jawan was taken to a hospital, where his condition was stated to be stable. Security forces have cordoned off the area and launched a hunt for the militants. Kashmir unrest Security personnel stand guard during restrictions and strike call given by separatist groups against civilian killings, in Srinagar on Monday. Authorities imposed restrictions in parts of Valley to maintain law and order. 2. Restrictions in Srinagar to prevent protests: Authorities imposed restrictions in parts of Srinagar and some other places in the valley on Monday to prevent separatist-called protests and a sit-in outside the Civil Secretariat in Srinagar. The protest shutdown and sit-in was called by the Joint Resistance Leadership (JRL), a separatist conglomerate headed by Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umer Farooq and Muhammad Yasin Malik, against the killing of 10 people on Sunday including five civilians on Sunday. The Civil Secretariat that houses the offices of the Chief Minister, her colleagues and senior bureaucrats is opening on Monday after a six-month sojourn in Jammu. 3. Educational institutions shut: Kashmir University suspended classes for two days from Monday as a precautionary measure and postponed exams that were to be held on Monday. 4. Internet suspended:Mobile internet services remained suspended in all south Kashmir districts since Sunday in addition to Srinagar and Ganderbal districts in the north of the valley. 5. Rail services were also suspended as a precautionary measure. 6. 5 Hizbul terrorists killed inencounter; 5 protesters die: Five Hizbul Mujahideen terrorists including its top commander Saddam Padder and a fresh recruit, an assistant professor from the Kashmir University, were killed in an encounter on Sunday in militancy-infested Shopian area in south Kashmir even as five civilians died during clashes between protesters and security forces near the encounter site, the police said, reported PTI. The five slain terrorists were identified as Saddam Hussain Padder, Bilal Ahmad Mohand, Adil Ahmed Malik, Tauseed Ahmad Sheikh and Mohammed Rafi Bhat, a PhD scholar and an assistant professor in the Kashmir University, they said. 7. Who were the slained terrorists? Saddam Hussain Padder, who hailed from Heff in Shopian region, was active since September 2014, while Adil Ahmed Malik was active since 2014 and Tauseed Ahmad Sheikh from 2013. Bilal Ahmad Mohand was active since 2016 and the Kashmir University assistant professor had joined the terror group last Friday, officials said. With Padder's killing, all 10 militants, who appeared for the first time together along with Hizbul Mujahideen's poster boy Burhan Wani in 2015, have been neutralised, officials said. The picture of 10 Hizbul Mujahideen militants at an apple orchard had created a stir in the valley as they were touted by insurgent groups as 'Kashmir's new boys' who had taken up arms. Of the 10, Padder was the only one alive, police said. Padder and his aides were involved in a number of civilian killings and attacks on security forces besides instigating youth to join the terrorist network, police said. 8. What happened during yesterday's encounter: Sunday's encounter in Badigam comes within 24 hours of a swift police operation in Chattabal area of the city in which three Lashker-e-Taiba militants were gunned down. During the gun-battle on Sunday, police made several appeals to the militants to surrender and also made their family members talk to them. Inspector General of Police, Kashmir, S P Pani said repeated attempts were made to persuade the assistent professor to surrender. After receiving an input about his presence, we even brought his family from Ganderbal to persuade him to surrender, Pani said. 'During the encounter, while handling a highly volatile situation, civilians were injured in cross firing and among them five succumbed to their injuries. The condition of other injured persons are stated to be stable,' an official spokesperson said, reported PTI. 9. Mehbooba Mufti expresses anguish: Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti expressed anguish and grief over the death of five civilians. 'It sounds very depressing to note that our state is losing young lives, to the unending cycle of violence, who could otherwise be utilised for a positive contribution to the state. Sunday's deaths have brought a stark fact to fore that gun, either way of a militant or that of security forces, is no solution for resolving issues,' Mehbooba said. She said political issues need political intervention. 'The three decades' long violence in the state is a testimony to the fact that guns from either side cannot ensure peace, but a compassion driven reconciliation process based on mutual respect surely can. 'In this regard, I appeal the national leadership of the country to show the element of compassion and empathy as required by the present day situation here and display the statesmanship to get J-K out of the quagmire of killings by engaging in a meaningful dialogue in the state. The sooner it happens, the more we can get our state out of the vicious cycle of killings and destruction,' she said. 10. Omar Abdullah's take on Kashmir crisis: Opposition National Conference (NC) working president Omar Abdullah said Kashmir issue has to be resolved through sustained dialogue and engagement and the 'unabated' civilian killings in the Valley were unacceptable. Expressing grief and sorrow over the civilian killings in the state, Abdullah said educated, employed young men becoming militants called for serious introspection at the central and state level and again highlighted the need for a permanent, sustainable and acceptable resolution of the political issue. 'Turning a blind eye towards the alarming situation won't change reality. The growing levels of alienation and isolation are alarming signs and need to be acknowledged and addressed politically. This is not an economic issue and cannot be resolved through economic packages,' he said.

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