Trader attempts self-immolation in Jammu and Kashmir

September 22nd, 2008 - 4:40 pm ICT by IANS  

Jammu, Sep 22 (IANS) A man attempted self-immolation in Jammu and Kashmir’s Kathua district Monday, the second day of a shutdown called by the Shri Amarnath Yatra Sangarsh Samiti over the closure of a theatre where they were to hold a function.Jawant Singh, 28, a vegetable trader in Chagwal town of Kathua, 60 km from here, poured kerosene on himself and then set himself ablaze, a police official said.

“He shouted ‘Bum, Bum Bhole’ (praise to Lord Shiva) as he set himself on fire,” an eyewitness told IANS on phone from Chagwal.

“He has sustained 80 percent burns and on the advice of doctors in the Jammu Medical College Hospital, we are air-lifting him to the Post Graduate Institute (PGI) in Chandigarh for specialised treatment. A chopper has been arranged,” the police official said.

The two-day shutdown called by the Samiti saw a partial response in the state’s winter capital Jammu. Banks, government offices and some educational institutions functioned normally.

“Some public transport also plied on the city roads and private vehicles plied normally,” an official said.

The Samiti had called for a two-day shutdown Sunday and Monday as the administration in Jammu had sealed the Abhinav theatre here. The Samiti was to have held a function at the venue Saturday to compensate the next of kin of those who were killed in the two-month long agitation for the restoration of forest land in Baltal to the Amarnath Shrine board, which manages the annual pilgrimage to the cave shrine.

Reports from neighbouring Samba district said the shutdown call met with marginal response.

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