A man was killed in firing by security forces as hundreds of people descended on the streets of Kulgam in south Kashmir and its adjoining areas to protest the death of four alleged militants on Sunday.
Health officials said at least 15 youngsters were injured by bullets, pellets and tear gas shells fired by security forces at agitators. The security personnel were attempting to break up protests near Frisal in Kulgam, where four militants, two soldiers and a civilian had been killed in an encounter earlier in the day.
The deceased protester was identified as 24-year-old Mushtaq Ibrahim from Sirgufwara. The youth probably died of bullet wounds, said deputy inspector general of south Kashmir SP Pani, adding that the other injured protesters are out of danger.
“We have referred at least 15 wounded youngsters to the Anantnag district hospital,” said Kulgam chief medical officer Dr Shafi. “We are compiling more reports of the kind from adjoining areas.”
Some of the injured people, who were hit in vital areas of their body, have been referred to medical institutions in Srinagar.
The encounter occurred after security forces received a tip-off on the presence of militants at Kulgam’s Frisal village on Saturday night. Army sources said they were yet to identify how the civilian – who was taken hostage by gunmen – had died.
Pani said all the militants were local residents. “We are ascertaining their identities,” he added.
Kashmir witnessed months of unrest after the death of Hizbul Mujahideen militant commander Burhan Wani in July last year. Over 90 persons lost their lives in the protests that followed.