SRINAGAR: A youth was killed in firing by security forces in South Kashmir’s Pulwama district on Friday, taking the death toll of people killed in the ongoing unrest in the Valley, triggered by the killing of 21-year-old Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani, to 70, while authorities enforced tough curfew and detained separatist leaders to foil their march.
The deceased, identified as Shakeel Ahmad Ganai, was among eight persons injured when security forces fired on protestors in Nikas village of Haal in Pulwama. Ganai sustained critical injuries and was rushed to a nearby hospital, where he later succumbed. According to doctors who attended on him, Ganai was hit by a bullet near his shoulder. “The bullet had pierced his heart,” they said.
With the youth’s killing, the death toll of people killed in the ongoing unrest in the Valley has risen to 70. Meanwhile, authorities enforced curfew and restrictions in Srinagar and other parts of the Valley to foil the “separatists’ march” to the martyrs graveyard in Eidgah in Srinagar. Police detained separatist leaders Syed Ali Geelani and Mirwaiz Umar Farooq when they tried to defy house arrest restrictions and march towards Eidgah. Kashmir has been witnessing continuous curfew since July 9, a day after Burhan Wani was killed. It is the longest spell of curfew and shutdown in the Valley.
Youth at many places in the Valley defied curfew and staged demonstrations and clashed with the police and paramilitary personnel. The police fired tear gas shells, pellets and live ammunition besides resorting to heavy baton charge to disperse the protesters, who pelted stones on them. According to official sources, over 200 people and security men sustained injuries in the clashes with many suffering pellet injuries. The authorities are likely to enforce tough curfew in Srinagar on Saturday as well, since separatists have called for a march to the Army headquarters in Srinagar.