Jammu & Kashmir: One killed, hundreds injured in brutal clampdown by India

9th Aug 2019
Jammu & Kashmir: One killed, hundreds injured in brutal clampdown by India

By Riyaz ul Khaliq

 

AA: One Kashmiri Muslim was killed and hundreds injured in violent clampdown by India  in Jammu and Kashmir. Around 500 have been detained by the Indian troops in the last five days. The world governments have been reluctant to condemn the brutal crackdown.

The UK Government has refused to condemn the clampdown of Kashmiri Muslims by Indian Government. The Prime Minister has refused to comment according to The Muslim News. However, UK’s Foreign Office Spokesman told The Muslim News in a statement: “We are following developments closely and support calls for the situation to remain calm.”

Editor of The Muslim News @ahmedversi tweeted on August 7:

 

” #DowningStreet refused to comment on clampdown of #JammuAndKashmir by @narendramodi’s #BJP Govt, revoking Article  370. “It is not the matter for the Prime Minister, it is the responsibility of the Foreign Office.”

 

A total of 560 people were detained in the cities of Srinagar, Baramulla and Gurez, according to the Indian Express. Around 400 political leaders, including former Chief Ministers Mehbooba Mufti and Omar Abdullah, remain are incarcerated in prisons.

Mosques have been closed and the Indian Government has said Eid al-Adha prayers will be allowed in local mosques but not in Jama Masjid in Srinagar.

A youth died after diving into a river and drowning while trying to escape from police after he and several others had thrown stones at the officers. Some fifty people were taken to a local hospital after Indian government troops fired shotgun pellets and live bullets to push the protesters back in south Kashmir’s Kulgam district on Wednesday.

Three policemen were wounded in clashes with protesters in the district of Poonch, which abuts the line of control dividing Indian-controlled Kashmir from Pakistan.

Witnesses said that thousands of villagers poured onto roads as two suspected fighters fought a gun battle with soldiers from inside a house in the area. Protesters pelted government forces with stones to give the fighters cover to escape, they said.

As Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed his country over why special provisions to Jammu and Kashmir were removed, residents of the disputed territory remained out of touch from the world outside.

The special provisions, under which the state agreed to become part of the Indian union in 1947, allowed it to enact its own laws and prevented outsiders to settle and own land in the territory.

Kashmiri leaders and citizens fear this step is an attempt by the Indian government to change demography of the Muslim-majority state, where some groups have been fighting against Indian rule for independence, or for unification with neighboring Pakistan.

As the crackdown in Kashmir intensifies, some Kashmiri prisoners have been airlifted to India’s Uttar Pradesh province, Indian broadcaster NDTV reported.

Reports of sporadic protests have also been coming in, however, Anadolu Agency could not reach its correspondent in the region to confirm the reports as Internet, cell phones and landline phones have been blocked. In some parts, cable television has also been cut off.

Kashmiris living outside Kashmir and in other parts of the world told Anadolu Agency they were unable to reach their families by phone or Internet.

Earlier on Thursday, Modi promised that the new status of Kashmir will bring employment and boost tourism in the region.

This came as 30,000 additional troops were deployed in the region to quell possible protests.

 

Security for Eid, Friday prayers

Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik, who was handpicked by the Modi government and whose status has been downgraded to lieutenant governor under the new arrangement, took control of security situation in the state on Thursday, news agency Press Trust of India (PTI) reported.

He also reviewed arrangements for Friday prayers and the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha..

Kashmiri newspapers have not been published since Monday due to lockdown.

Also, the official state flag will soon be permanently removed after the special status was abrogated, PTI reported.

In a related development, Pakistan has reacted strongly to what it calls India’s unilateral move by suspending bilateral trade with India, expelling the Indian high commissioner and downgrading its diplomatic status.

Jammu and Kashmir, a Himalayan region, is held by India and Pakistan in parts and claimed by both in full.

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

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 police attack Kashmiri Muslim protesters with stun grenades in old Srinagar on 5 June 2019 after Eid prayers. Photographer: Faisal Khan/AA]

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