Three killed in Kashmir firing, over 50 injured (Night Lead)

July 31st, 2010 - 12:49 am ICT by IANS  

Srinagar, July 30 (IANS) Three people, including a 14-year-old, were killed in firing by security forces and over 50 injured Friday in daylong clashes between the security forces and protesters across the Kashmir Valley. Mobs also ransacked the Sopore railway station and burnt a police post in Baramulla.
Two people were killed when Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) troopers opened fire in Amargarh area of north Kashmir’s Sopore town, 54 km from here, at an unruly mob that had damaged a portion of the rail track there.

“Two people identified as Muhammad Ahsan Ganai and Showkat Ahmad Wagay were killed and three others sustained gunshot wounds in the Amargarh firing incident,” a senior police officer said here.

Three other critically injured protesters were removed to Srinagar for specialized treatment where attending doctors have described their conditions as critical.

CRPF spokesman, Prabhakar Tripathi, however, denied the CRPF had opened fire at the protesters in Sopore. “There is no deployment of the CRPF in the area,” he said.

Angry mobs later torched the Railway Protection Force’s hutments in Sopore town after ransacking the railway station.

Two private vehicles parked at the railway station were also set on fire.

A large mob of protesters set ablaze the Pattan police station Friday afternoon after baton charges and repeated tear smoke shelling by the security forces failed to quell them, a senior police officer here said.

“The mob later attacked the policemen posted at the Pattan police station who opened fire in self-defence resulting in the death of 14-year Adil Sheikh of adjacent Palhalan village,” the official added.

Three other protesters sustained critical bullet wounds in the incident while 12 others sustained secondary bullet injuries which are not critical.

“20 other people including policemen have sustained blunt injuries due to stone pelting and baton charges,” the official said.

The situation in the Pattan town in Baramulla district is extremely hostile as a large procession is continuing there carrying the body of the slain youth, reports reaching here said.

Three people sustained gunshot wounds in the adjacent Singhpora village on the Srinagar-Muzaffarabad highway where mobs blocked the highway by felling trees and vandalised passing vehicles of the security forces.

The injured have since been admitted to a hospital in Srinagar for treatment.

In yet another incident, an angry mob attacked the Potkhah police post near Sopore town and ransacked it. The mobs also torched two buses of police.

In south Kashmir’s Tral town, protesters pelted stones on security forces, leading the latter to use batons and tear smoke shells to quell the unruly mob.

Twenty people including eight security men and 12 protesters were injured in the Tral clashes.

One of the injured protesters had to be shifted to Srinagar for treatment after being hit by a tear smoke shell in the face.

Doctors here said his condition was critical.

Earlier, one teenager identified as Iqbal Ahmad Khan was critically injured when CRPF troopers opened fire to quell an unruly mob of protesters in the Chanapora area of the city, 5 km from city centre Lal Chowk.

Doctors at the Sher-e-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences Soura (SKIMS) who operated on Khan said his condition was “unstable and critical”.

“The injured person has been put on life support system and his condition is unstable and critical,” the doctors said here.

The condition of three others admitted with gunshot injuries at SKIMS is also critical, the doctors said.

Mobs ruthlessly beat five local policemen in Rambagh area after the news of the Chanapora firing incident spread in the city.

Clashes between curfew defying mobs and the security forces continued in Chanapora, Barzalla, Rambagh and Hyderpora areas of the city till late this evening.

The situation is extremely volatile in the Baramulla district and Srinagar city where authorities have announced an indefinite curfew. People have been asked not to venture out as those defying the curfew would be dealt with sternly.

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