Amid strict curfew across Kashmir on Eid, two youths were killed during protests and clashes that erupted across Kashmir which has left nearly 40 people injured.
The two killings took place in Bandipora and Shopian districts. Mustafa Mir, in his early 20s, was killed after he was hit by a tear-smoke shell during clashes in Bandipora town, while Shahid Ahmad was killed after being hit by a pellet in Bonabazar, Shopian.
Soon after the Eid prayers ended in Bandipora, a group of protestors started pelting stones at security forces who retaliated by firing tear smoke shells and pellet guns, a police official said.
He said 20-year-old Murtaza Ahmed was hit by a tear smoke shell resulting in his death. Several others were injured in the security forces’ action in Bandipora town.
Restrictions on assembly of large number of people have been imposed in view of the call by separatists for a march to the local offices of the United Nations today, coinciding with the global body’s Opening of 71st Session of the UN General Assembly at UN headquarters in New York.
The Army, which has been asked to be on standby, will step in if there is fresh outbreak of violence in the Valley, which has been witnessing widespread unrest for over two months leading to death of over 80 people so far, official sources said.
Army troops have already been stationed at vantage points in rural areas which have a history of violent protests, they said, adding curfew came in force from midnight.
In Shopian, the killing took place when violent clashes broke out in Bonabazar when people tried to defy curfew restrictions. Doctors at Shopian said Shahid was brought dead with pellet injuries in the chest. Many protesters were injured in the clashes in Shopian.
With these two fresh casualties, the death toll in the current unrest has reached 81. More than 10,000 people have been injured in clashes in over the past two months.
Nearly 40 protesters were injured in clashes on Tuesday in Srinagar, Shopian, Bijbehara, Tral, Kulgam, Bandipora and Baramulla.
The J&K government on Tuesday imposed strict curfew across the Kashmir Valley and did not allow Eid congregational prayers in Eidgah and main mosques amid fears of largescale protests and violence.
Government has deployed thousands of forces across Kashmir and pressed into service unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), commonly known as drones, for aerial surveillance to ensure peace.
Kashmiri separatist leaders leading the present agitation have called for a march to United Nations Military Observers Group for India and Pakistan on Tuesday.