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Clashes in Kashmir over murder of three youths

photo credits:The Indian Express

Srinagar: Intermittent clashes rocked several places in Jammu and Kashmir’s Baramulla district on Tuesday, as protestors pelted stones at the security forces over the murder of three youths whose bodies were found in an apple orchard on Monday.


Protestors took to the Baramulla-Muzaffarabad road at Narbal, Pattan, Palhallan and Sangrama, and pelted stones to block the passage of traffic on the highway.

After contingents of police and paramilitary forces were deployed to clear the highway, protestors clashed with them.

Though the highway was restored for traffic for some time, the protestors regrouped and again pelted stones at the security forces and private and public vehicles passing on the highway.

There was a complete shutdown in Pattan, Palhallan and Sopore towns over the murders of the three youths who police said belonged to the Lashkar-e-Islami breakaway group of the Hizbul Mujahideen.

Police said the youths were murdered because of a rivalry between the Hizbul Mujahideen and the breakaway outfit headed by wanted militant commander Qayoom Najar.

Police identified all the three bodies — which were found in an apple orchard in Pattan area — as those of militants belonging to Lashkar-e-Islami.

Meanwhile, the Hizbul Mujahideen issued a statement on Tuesday, saying there was no militant group known as Lashkar-e-Islami.

The Hizbul statement said the three youths belonged to the Hizbul and were killed by the security forces in a staged shootout.

Separatist leaders Syed Ali Geelani and Muhammad Yasin Malik have called for a protest shutdown on Wednesday against the murder of the three youths.


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The Plight Of Kashmir’s Pandits

The Global Kashmiri Pandit Diaspora said a memorandum signed by thousands of Kashmiri Pandits has been addressed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi

Kashmiri Pandits
Plight of Kashmiri Pandits continues: Community members. Flickr

Dozens of Kashmiri Pandits on Friday paid homage to civilians, Army men and their community members killed since 1989 and said the plight of Pandits still continues.

For 28 years, the Kashmiri Pandit community has been observing September 14 as ‘Martyrs’ Day-Balidan Diwas’ at B.K. Ganjoo memorial park in Central Delhi.

United Kingdom-based activist Shafalica Bhan Kotwal who has been fighting for the rights of the Kashmiri Pandits, said: “There is no major change in the lives of Kashmir Pandits, their plight still continues despite Bharatiya Janata Party being in power.

Kashmiri pandits
Kashmir. Pixabay

“Most of them were thrown out of their homes. They are living in pathetic conditions in shelter homes with no basic facilities.”

She said the community was once accustomed to living in minus 17 degrees Celsius. “Their families are now living in the hostile Jammu weather,” she added.

The son of Kasmiri Pandits’ leader Tika Lal Taploo, Ashutosh Taploo, was at the meeting. He said: “My father was killed not just because he was a Pandit..because he was looked as the Hindu community leader.”

Kashmiri Pandits
Kashmiri Hindus protest renaming of Shankaracharya Hill. Flickr

Taploo said his father was the first Pandit to have fallen to terrorist bullets in the Valley.

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“Till today no government has brought any major change in Pandits’ lives, the atrocities we experienced and psychological trauma we suffered is fresh” he said.

In a statement calling for justice to “victims of terrorism,” the Global Kashmiri Pandit Diaspora said a memorandum signed by thousands of Kashmiri Pandits has been addressed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and submitted to Union Minister Hansraj Ahir. (IANS)