As the authorities clamped an undeclared curfew in most parts of Srinagar to prevent a flare-up, the situation took an ugly turn after a youth died, allegedly in police firing in Nishat area on Friday.
A civilian and a policeman were also killed when militants opened fire in Sopore.
Fearing trouble after the Friday prayers, the authorities imposed an undeclared curfew in most parts and deployed police and paramilitary forces in strength.
Though the city and other parts of the Valley were tense for the last four days, after a young boy died, allegedly after being hit by a teargas shell, the situation was relatively calm on Friday. However, it worsened after the youth’s death on Friday.
According to residents, when Zahid Farooq was playing cricket, a speeding security vehicle opened fire. He was critically injured and taken to hospital where he died, they said.
“Zahid was hit on his chest when security forces opened fire. We tried to shift him to the hospital but he died of his injuries on the way,” a resident told The Hindu over phone. However, it was not clear as to which force the vehicle belonged to. Some said it was the BSF and others mentioned the CRPF and the Army.
As the news of the death broke, thousands of people took to the streets in protest and raised slogans. Reports said it was becoming difficult for the police and civil administration to deal with the situation.
Inspector General of Police, Kashmir Zone, Farooq Ahmad said it was an unfortunate incident. “It is a mysterious killing as there was no deployment in the area. But we are investigating the incident,” he said.
The IGP admitted that the situation was tense.
CRPF spokesperson Prabhakar Tripathi denied the force’s involvement in the incident. “There was no provocation in the area, so why would our men fire?” he said.
According to reports, several people were injured in clashes between troopers and youth.
In Sopore, a policeman and a civilian were killed and two others injured when militants attacked a police party in the Sopore chowk after the Friday prayers. Witnesses said militants from Shalpora area opened fired on the police with automatic weapons, injuring one of them critically. In the exchange of fire that lasted for about half an hour, many were injured.
Deputy Inspector General, North Kashmir, Abdul Qayoom Manhas said the two militants ambushed the patrol police party in the main chowk area. “Two persons, including a head constable and one civilian, died and two others, including a woman, were injured,” Mr. Manhas said.