Millennium Post

Curfew reimposed in Shopian

Curfew was on Thursday reimposed in Shopian town of south Kashmir following death of a youth in firing by security forces on Wednesday that took the death toll in the area to five since Saturday.

‘Curfew has been imposed in Shopian town as a preventive measure to maintain law and order and prevent loss of property and life,’ a police spokesman said.

The prohibitory orders were invoked after a youth was killed when CRPF personnel allegedly opened fire on protestors outside Gagran camp of the force yesterday while 13 others suffered pellet injuries.

Residents of Shopian town said Muhammad Rafi Rather, a 28-year-old bus driver, was shot down by the paramilitary Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel posted at Gagaran camp, around 50 km from here.

They said the incident took place near Shopian town without any provocation as the man was passing by the camp.
Two other people, including a girl, sustained bullet wounds in the incident, they said.

A CRPF spokesman, however, denied any firing by personnel posted at Gagaran. ‘CRPF did not open fire. Our men were not even deployed on the streets,’ CRPF spokesman Kishore Prasad told reporters in Srinagar.

The protestors were demanding removal of the CRPF camp and arrest of the personnel involved in firing incident on Saturday that left four persons dead including three civilians.

Shopian town was placed under curfew on Sunday after the weekend firing incident. The restrictions were lifted Wednesday morning but fresh casualties necessitated reimposing of the curfew in the town.

Meanwhile, normal life in Kashmir was disrupted today due to a strike call given by a separatist group over the Shopian incident.

Most of the shops, business establishments and educational institutions remained closed due to the strike called by Tehreek-e-Hurriyat headed by Syed Ali Shah Geelani. Public transport remained off the roads but private vehicles were plying on almost all routes in the city.

Police detained Independent MLA from Langate Shiekh Abdul Rashid outside civil secretariat as he staged a protest against the killing in Shopian.

Water cannons were used to disperse supporters of the MLA, who had planned to gherao Civil Secretariat to protest against the killing of the youth.

Meanwhile, one person was critically injured when police allegedly opened fire on stone-pelting protestors in Radwani area of Kulgam.Police said a group of protestors started pelting stones on a police camp this afternoon. Police personnel fired tear smoke shells to disperse the protestors, they said.
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