Jammu & Kashmir: 11 civilians wounded in Indian army gunfire

14th Jan 2019
Jammu & Kashmir: 11 civilians wounded in Indian army gunfire

By Zahid Rafiq

 

SRINAGAR, Jammu and Kashmir, India, (AA): At least 11 civilians were wounded on Sunday when Indian armed forces opened fire on mourners and protesters gathered to offer funeral prayers for two slain militants in the south of Kashmir.

Six of the injured were taken to the district hospital in Pulwama.

Medical Superintendent Dr. Rashid Parra said one of the wounded had a fire arm injury, another had either a shell or fire arm injury on his head, and others had pellet injuries. Parra told Anadolu Agency that all of them were referred to a hospital in the capital city Srinagar because of the serious nature of the injuries.

At least four other civilians are reported to have been hit by pellets, while a young Kashmiri girl was hit by a speeding Indian forces’ vehicle amid the protests.

According to local media, one of the wounded Bilal Ahmad is in critical condition with an injury in the head.

The two militants, belonging to the Al Badr militant outfit, were killed after Indian forces ambushed the house they were hiding in on Saturday night.

One of the two militants, Zeenat ul Islam, was the top commander of the Al Badr outfit.

Thousands of people marched toward his village, Sugan in Shopian district, to offer funeral prayers despite the barricades and deployment of troops along the way.

According to eyewitnesses, multiple funeral prayers were held for the slain militants as more and more people kept arriving.

As the reports of action by Indian forces spread, more people took to the streets.

The train service was suspended in south Kashmir and the internet blocked by the Indian administration.

Killings and wounding of civilians by Indian forces is common in Indian occupied Kashmir. At least eleven people – including seven civilians, an Indian soldier and three militants – were killed in Kashmir’s south on December 15.

According to eyewitnesses and reports in local newspapers, the Indian forces opened fire on the crowd, killing at least seven and wounding over two dozen people.

Jammu and Kashmir, a Muslim-majority Himalayan region, is held by India and Pakistan in parts and claimed by both in full. A small sliver of Kashmir is also held by China.

Since they were partitioned in 1947, the two countries have fought three wars — in 1948, 1965 and 1971 — two of them over Kashmir.

Also, in Siachen glacier in northern Kashmir, Indian and Pakistani troops have fought intermittently since 1984. A cease-fire came into effect in 2003.

Some Kashmiri groups in Jammu and Kashmir have been fighting against Indian rule for independence, or for unification with neighboring Pakistan.

According to several human rights organizations, thousands of people have reportedly been killed in the conflict in the region since 1989.

Additional report by The Muslim News

[Archive Photo: Indian soldiers in Jammu and Kashmir. Photographer: Faisal Khan/AA]

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