One killed, 30 injured in police firing, teargassing in Baramulla

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Baramulla, Aug 11 (UNI) One person was killed and about 30 others were injured when police opened fire and burst teargas shells to disperse thousands of processionists who were marching towards the Kaman post, the last Indian post on the Line of Control (LOC), to cross over to Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (POK).

Official sources said about one lakh people, led by senior Hurriyat Conference (HC) leader Shabir Ahmad Shah, had reached Sheri and were marching towards Uri.

They said the apple township of Sopore was put under undeclared curfew since last night in view of the threat held by the Kashmir Fruit Growers Association (KFGA).

A large number of security personnel were deployed in the entire town and people were being directed to remain in their homes.

However, no official confirmation about the imposition of curfew in the town had been received.

The trouble at the Sopore Mandi started when a large number of people who were in the nearby localities, took to streets.

The drivers and conductors tried to take out their fruit trucks from Mandi, when security forces stopped them.

However, they were joined by others and insisted that they should be allowed to march towards Muzaffarabad with their fruit trucks.

Security forces had very tough time to control them, who were also joined by Chairmen of Muslim League Mushtaq-ul-Islam and Islamic Students League Shakeel Ahmad Bakshi.

Mr Mushtaq and Mr Bakshi were later taken into custody along with their ten supporters.

Raising pro-feedom and anti-Hindu fundamentalist slogans, the protesters clashed with the security forces near the main gate of the Mandi.

Police burst teargas shells and resorted to repeated lathi-charge to diserpse them.

However, the processionists, who outnumbered the security and police personnel, marched in trucks and other vehicles towards Baramulla.

In Baramulla town curfew like situation prevailed since early this morning with security forces guarding the deserted streets on both sides of the roads.

Shops and business establishments remained closed and traffic was off the roads.

Government offices, banks and educational institutions wore a deserted look.

People were being advised by the security forces to remain indoor because of curfew. A large number of personnel from security forces have been deployed on the Srinagar-Pattan-Baramulla- Uri road since last night.

However, when the processionists reach Baramulla, thousands of people from different north Kashmir areas, including Sangrama, joined them.

Security forces and police opened fire and burst teargass shells to diserpse them. Two people received bullet wounds while 30 others were injured in stone pelting and lathiharge.

One of the injured later died on way to hospital, they said.

The processionists reach Sheri, seven km from here on way to Uri where thousands of people are waiting for them.

UNI XC/BAS GT HT1545

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