Kashmir remains on edge; death toll rises to 30, curfew continues
Following Hizbul Mujahiden militant Burhan Wani’s encounter on Friday, Kashmir has witnessed unabated violence.
Srinagar: Following Hizbul Mujahideen militant Burhan Wani’s encounter on Friday, Kashmir has been witnessing unabated violence. 30 people, including 29 civilian protesters and a policeman, have died in the last four days.
The authorities have imposed a curfew for the fourth consecutive day on Tuesday in most parts of the Kashmir Valley to prevent the deadly violence.
A huge number of security personnel have been deployed on the ground in vulnerable areas of Srinagar and elsewhere in the Valley to contain the protests.
"14 people died in Anantnag, eight in Kulgam, four in Shopian, three in Pulwama and one in Srinagar district," an official confirmed.
Curfew continued in Anantnag, Shopian, Kulgam, Pulwama districts in south and Baramulla, Sopore, Kupwara, Ganderbal, and Bandipora.
Reports say that over 1,000 people including civilians and security personnel have been injured in the clashes.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today chaired a high-level meet to deliberate on the Kashmir issue. Minister of State in the PMO Jitendra Singh, Home Minister Rajnath Singh, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, National Security Advisor Ajit Doval attended the meet in New Delhi.
While briefing the media, Jitendra Singh said, "The Prime Minister has made an appeal for maintaining peace and calm in the valley. He has hoped that the situation would come back to normal very soon."
Separatists have extended the protest shutdown in the Valley until Wednesday. All business and other routine activities of life have been completely paralysed.
In order to contain the unabated violence the officials have suspended both mobile Internet facility and cell phone operations in south Kashmir's Shopian, Anantnag, Kulgam and Pulwama districts.
Big boost for India
Kashmir is an internal matter of India, the US today said and asked all stakeholders to make efforts towards finding a peaceful resolution of tensions in the Valley following the killing of Wani last week.
"We have seen reports of the clashes between protestors and Indian forces in Kashmir and are concerned by the violence. We encourage all sides to make efforts towards finding a peaceful resolution," a State Department Spokesman said.
The spokesman said the US has not spoken with Indians on this issue as it is an internal matter of India.
Burhan Wani, poster boy of Hizbul killed
In a major success for security forces, the poster boy of Hizbul Mujahideen, Burhan Wani, was killed in an encounter at Kokernag area, 83 km from here, along with two of his local accomplices.
21-year-old Burhan, who shot to fame after his videos asking youth in Kashmir to join militancy appeared on social media, was cornered in Bumdoora village of Kokernag Friday morning by a joint team of police and Army.
Burhan, who carried a cash reward of Rs 10 lakh on his head, is believed to have taken up the gun to avenge his elder brother's humiliation by the security forces who made him do squats after picking him up for no crime.
Omar takes a swipe at Mehbooba
National Conference leader Omar Abdullah today took a swipe at Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti for not taking part in the crucial meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi to review the volatile situation in Kashmir.
Home Minister meets Imams
Home Minister Rajnath Singh today met a group of Imams who urged him to help restore calm in the Kashmir Valley which is witnessing turmoil following the killing of the Hizbul commander.
The Imams told Singh that they would be meeting Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti and local clerics of the state in an attempt to help bring calm in the Valley.