Published On: Mon, Jul 18th, 2016

Kashmir death toll rises as protesters defy curfew

Share This

Eighteen dead and more than 100 injured in anti-India violence after the killing of a popular rebel commander

The death toll in Kashmir has risen to 18 as deadly clashes between Indian troops and protesters continued despite a curfew imposed in the disputed Himalayan region to suppress anti – India violence following the killing of a popular rebel commander.

Six civilians who had been injured after Indian troops fired on rock-throwing protesters died overnight, and on Sunday a man was killed as hundreds of people defied the curfew and clashed with troops in the town of Pulwama. Eight people were killed on Saturday.

The protests erupted after Burhan Wani, chief of operations of Hizbul Mujahideen, Kashmir’s largest rebel group, was killed in fighting with Indian troops on Friday. Two rebel comrades of Wani also died.

Indian troops used live ammunition, pellet guns and teargas to try to control the crowds, police said. More than 100 civilians have been injured in the clashes.

Shiv Sahai, a police intelligence chief, said protesters had attacked several police and paramilitary posts in the region, and 90 government troops had been injured. Thousands of government forces in riot gear have fanned out across towns and villages in Kashmir.

Wani, who was in his early 20s, had become the face of militancy in Kashmir over the last five years. His video clips and pictures were widely circulated among young people.

Insp Gene Syed Javaid Mujtaba Gillani described his killing as the “biggest success against militants” in recent years.

Indian officials have indefinitely suspended an annual Hindu pilgrimage to a mountain cave that draws about half a million people each year.

Mobile phone services in southern parts of Kashmir remained suspended for a second day and mobile internet access was blocked in the rest of the region to prevent demonstrators from mobilising.

Shops, businesses and government offices remained closed. Authorities also postponed school and college examinations and suspended rail services.

Most people in Kashmir have long resented the Indian presence and support rebel demands for an independent Kashmir or a merger with Pakistan.

More than 68,000 people have been killed in the uprising and the subsequent Indian military crackdown.

Courtesy: The Guardian (UK)

    Print This Post Print This Post

Leave a comment

XHTML: You can use these html tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>