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Violence engulfs Srinagar, 45 injured in clashes

By Mukhtar Ahmad
Last updated on: June 12, 2010 23:17 IST

At least 45 people, including 15 policemen, were injured in day-long clashes between the police and protestors in Srinagar on Saturday.

 

The protests erupted after the death of a class 12 student in violent clashes in the old city after Friday prayers.

 

The body of Tufail Ahmad Mattoo was handed over to his family members after an autopsy was conducted to ascertain the cause of his death.

 

Mattoo's family claims that he died after being hit by a tear smoke shell on the head.

 

Hundreds of people defied the curfew-like-restrictions imposed by the authorities and joined Mattoo's funeral.

 

Shouting pro-freedom and anti-India slogans, the mourners marched through the city carrying the boy's body through the old city.

 

Fresh clashes broke out in several parts of Srinagar immediately after the funeral and police and paramilitary personnel tried to quell the violence using teargas

and baton charges.

 

However, the clashes intensified and continued till late evening. Police and CRPF reinforcements were moved into the violence-affected areas to calm the situation.

 

Security forces fired rubber bullets at protestors at Khawaja Bazzar in the old city.  A youth identified as Momin Ahmad was injured by a bullet and shifted to the hospital

 

Central Reserve Police Force troopers allegedly beat up two men badly at Batmallo and Noorbagh localities, critically injuring both of them.

 

A senior police officer said the condition of Rafiq Bangroo, 26, was very critical, and he was operated on by a team of doctors for skull injuries.

 

The authorities have decided to continue the curfew-like-restrictions in the old city area on Sunday.

 

Meanwhile the Opposition People's Democratic Party has condemned the death of Mattoo and alleged that 'Jammu and Kashmir has been converted into a police state'.

Mukhtar Ahmad in Srinagar
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