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People defy Sopore curfew order

By Mukhtar Ahmad
June 26, 2010 13:47 IST

Security forces on Saturday patrolling the north Kashmir apple rich Sopore town where an indefinite curfew was imposed on Friday's evening following widespread protests over the killing of two youth in paramilitary, central reserve police force firing.

Even as curfew restrictions were in place in Sopore, angry mobs defied the restrictions at few places engaging the police and paramilitary in clashes.The mobs pelted the security forces who responded with teargas and baton charges. Authorities have moved in fresh reinforcements to enforce the restrictions in the town and maintain law and order.

Two youth were killed and six others wounded when CRPF troopers opened fire after their vehicle was attacked by a violent mob following the killing of two militants in an encounter in the town earlier.

The mob stoned and later torched the CRPF vehicle after which the central reserve police force troopers opened fire at the mob killing two youth identified as 16-year old Shakeel Ahmad and 17-year old Firdaus Ahmad. Six others who were wounded in the firing, which the CRPF spokesman said was done in self-defence, are undergoing treatment in the hospital.

A separatist-called-shutdown to protest against the Sopore incident affected normal life in Kashmir Valley. Shops in capital are shut while public transport remained off the roads, but private transport is plying as thousands of candidates sat today for the common entrance test for various professional courses in the state.

Police had to fire warning shots and use tear smoke and batons to disperse stone pelting mobs at various places in the Valley.

Mukhtar Ahmad in Srinagar
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