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J&K town observes shutdown in protest at killings

June 25, 2006 18:08 IST

A shutdown was observed in Jammu and Kashmir's Pattan town for the second day on Sunday to protest the death of a teenaged boy and a woman in separate incidents involving the security forces. 

The opposition National Conference has demanded a judicial probe into the matter. "We demand a judicial probe into the killing of an innocent youth and a woman by the security forces at Palhalan-Pattan," NC president Omar Abdullah told PTI.

He said the law and order situation in the state has drastically deteriorated since the Congress-PDP coalition government came to power in 2002.

A woman died after being hit by a stray bullet fired into the air by Central Reserve Police Force personnel on Saturday, to disperse a crowd protesting the death of teenaged student Tariq Ahmed Sofi. Sofi was killed in crossfire between militants and security forces in Baramulla district.

Shops and business establishments in Pattan remained closed and people blocked traffic on the Srinagar-Baramulla highway in support of their demand for an inquiry into the deaths, officials said.

Criticising the government, Abdullah said his party MP Abdul Rashid Shaheen and the MLA from Pattan, Sheikh Mustafa Kamal, were not allowed by police to enter the town when they tried to go to the area to condole the death of the boy and the woman.

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