A youth was critically injured by a teargas shell fired allegedly by security forces in Anantnag district during clashes amidst a complete on the third consecutive day Wednesday against the killing of Zahid Rasool Bhat. The youth has been identified as Naseer Ahmad Dar son of Gulzar Ahmad Dar of Baba Mohalla, Zirpora and was referred to SMHS for treatment. Many youth suffered minor injuries. However, Dar suffered a critical wound and was shifted to SKIMS. However, the police denied that the youth was hit by a tear gas shell. “He was injured by a stone not by a shell,” Senior Superintendent of Police, Anantnag Abdul Jabbar told KNS. He said that the youth was “out of danger” and has been shifted to SKIMS, Soura. Inspector General of Police Syed Javaid Mujtaba Gillani said that the police will investigate as to how the youth was critically injured. “It is not clear what has hit the youth…whether a stone or a teargas shell. We will investigate it,” Gillani told KNS. Clashes broke out between protesters and security forces in the district, with youth defying curfew-like restrictions to protest the killing of Bhat, who succumbed to his injuries sustained during the attack by a Hindu mob on a truck in Udhampur on October 9. Authorities had imposed Section 144 in the district to thwart protests that have been taking place following the death of Zahid. According to KNS correspondent from Islamabad, youth assembled in the morning at Sarnal, Botengoo, Zirpora, Gooriwan, SK Colony and Anchidoora and pelted security forces with stones. Police and CRPF reacted by lobbing teargas canisters and pepper shells to disperse the protesters. But the youth remained firm on their agitation. In the clashes, Dar was hit by a shell in his head and was shifted by local to the district hospital for treatment, where doctors referred him to SKIMS in Srinagar. A complete shutdown was observed, with shops, schools, and business units shut on the third day today, while traffic on Jammu-Srinagar Highway remained completely off. Qazi Yasir, who heads Ummat-i-Islami, has called for the shutdown on Thursday to protest against the killing of Zahid. The SSP claimed that the situation remained normal, barring few incidents of clashes.
2015 Kashmir Despatch