Following the ruckus in Big Marathon at Kashmir University, the minister for PHE, Irrigation and Flood Control Suknandan Kumar who was the chief guest on the occasion has complained before the police chief that the protests at the event was “nothing but security lapse”. Taking cognizance of minister’s complaint, the Director General of Police K Ranjendra Kumar has called for a hurried meeting of his subordinate officers on Tuesday, said sources. The meeting was attended by IGP CID, IGP Kashmir, DIG central Kashmir, and SSP Srinagar. The officers, as per sources, have briefed the DGP that the protests and violence at the event was not police’s failure but result of not properly informing the police by the organisers. The organiser of the event was private radio channel, BIG 92.7 FM, which as per police officers “had failed to give proper information of participants to the police”. Pertinently, clashes erupted at the first-ever international half-marathon event held in Srinagar last Sunday. Meanwhile, a member of the organising body (BIG 92.7 FM) told KNS that police was already informed about the participant. “We had a meeting with police and there are no failures from the organiser’s side,” member said. Police sources, however, added that the organisers have not informed police before hand, neither was the law enforcing agency given any list of participants or the schedule of the event. Police sources added: “Thill Saturday (September 12), we (police) didn’t have any intimation that the event was happening from Kashmir University. We approached the organisers at the venue of the event on our own, but they didn’t provide any information about the participants,” sources added. Clashes erupted between the youth and security forces near the venue in Hazratbal area. Shouting pro- freedom slogans youth waved Pakistani flag and pelted stones at the police who in retaliation fired teargas shells to disperse the protesters. During the award ceremony youth also threw plastic water bottles at the podium. The 21-km half-marathon was flagged off at 6.30 am from the Kashmir University at Hazratbal. It passed through the banks of Dal Lake along Foreshore Road. Following clashes police arrested 12 persons on charges of allegedly eve-easing and molesting women runners.
2015 Kashmir Despatch