Municipal authorities on Tuesday removed three security force bunkers from the main market in violence-hit Handwara town in north Kashmir, fulfilling one of the long pending demands of local residents.
“Three bunkers, which were constructed on top of shops in Handwara main market, have been removed by municipal authorities,” a police official said.
He said the main bunker, located in the round-about of the main market, has also been vacated and taken over by municipal authorities.
“This bunker will also be demolished and the task will be completed by 2 pm today,” the official said.
The municipal authorities also erected a board on the premises of the bunker, marking the place for conversion into a public park.
The locals had demanded the bunkers be removed for quite sometime but the Army had put its foot down, saying it was strategically important for the troops.
However, the demand for removal of these bunkers intensified after last week’s violence triggered by alleged molestation of a girl by an Army soldier.
Three people including a woman were killed in firing by security forces on protesters on Tuesday while two more persons were killed in separate security forces action against protesters on Wednesday at Drugmulla and on Friday at Nathnusa.
Curfew-like restrictions were relaxed in Handwara town for four hours today but remained in force in Kupwara and Trehgam towns of north Kashmir, police said.
“Restrictions have been relaxed for four hours in Handwara town from 8 to 12 noon. The relaxation period can be extended if the situation remains peaceful,” a police official said. He said so far the situation in violence-hit town was peaceful.