Day 26: Violent clashes erupt, 2 overnight killings push Kashmir to extreme edge

Srinagar: Already on the boil, fresh protests erupted in Kashmir today following the overnight killings of two civilians by government forces amid a nearly month long shutdown, curfew and protests. With these two killings the total toll has reached to 51, according to police.

People have been chanting slogans demanding end of Indian rule in the state. Demonstrations were held in the Pampore, Kulgam, Srinagar, Pulwama, Koil, and other several areas.

The government forces fired tear gas in Letapora after thousands of people offered funeral prayers for a young man, one of the two civilians killed overnight.
The protesters shouted anti-India slogans and denounced the killings of Kashmiri civilians during the recent unrest.

He was killed when a police guard escorting a government official fired at anti-India protesters who stopped their official car at Letapora late Tuesday.
Another young protester was critically wounded and later hospitalized in Srinagar, a police official said.

The other person killed overnight was a private guard at a bank in Srinagar. His family blamed paramilitary soldiers for fatally shooting him. The initial investigation suggests he died from a pellet wound as he had more than 360 small pellet balls in his body.

Protests erupted shortly after his body was brought to his neighborhood at Chattabal in Srinagar.

Defying the curfew, thousands of men and women carried his body to “Martyr’s graveyard” where hundreds of Kashmiri militants and civilians killed during the last 26 years of fighting have been buried.

Meanwhile, shops, businesses and schools remained closed for the 26th straight day on Wednesday due to a strike called by separatists demanding an end to Indian rule in the region. (PTK)

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