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Mysterious death sparks protest in South Kashmir

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The mysterious death of a youth in South Kashmir’s Anantnag district sparked tension on Tuesday. People in large numbers resorted to stone pelting when the dead body of the youth was taken to his native place Monghal Anantnag. The eyewitness said that police allegedly thrashed people and the Para-medical staff in District Hospital Anantnag who went on strike against the police excesses.

People in Monghal village alleged that police had arrested four youth from the village identified as Mashooq Ahmed Magray, Bilal Ahmed Dar, Tariq Ahmed Sofi and Imran Majid. However, police denied that they had arrested Bilal Ahmed Dar. Eyewitnesses said that the dead body of Bilal Ahmed Dar was found on Railway Track in Anantnag. As the news about the presence of his dead body spread in the District people assembled in large numbers and raised anti-police anti-government slogans.

The dead body of Bilal Ahmed Dar was taken to District Hospital Anantnag for postmortem. Eyewitnesses told KNT that after the postmortem when the dead body of Bilal was taken to his native village, people at Janglat Mandi pelted stones at police and CRPF personnel deployed on the roads. Youth resorted to heavy stone pelting while the police charged on youth with canes and dispersed them. Despite heavy teargas shelling the youth continued to pelt stones at police.

KNT reporter said that Police beat protestors to pulp and entered the houses and charged men and women with bamboo sticks. “I was covering the event but the policemen snatched my camera and beat me ruthlessly. When I complained to DIG, South Kashmir, he simply said that he will look into the matter,” Muneeb-ul-Islam said.

According to eyewitnesses, soon after the stone pelting police entered the District Hospital Anantnag and beat the staff there. “I am a doctor. I am surprised why policemen beat me up? What was my fault? Is there any Rule of Law prevailing here or not?” a doctor told the news agency Kashmir News Trust adding that policemen beat para-medical staff blue and black.

The staff from District Hospital Anantnag came out into open and raised anti-police slogans. “Staff has decided to go far a strike against the police excesses and we will not return to the work till assurance of protection is not given to us,” a staffer said.

Inspector General of Police Adul Gani Mir told KNT that Railway police during the wee hours informed about the presence of a dead body near the Railway Track. “Police acted accordingly and a post-mortem was done. Traces of Liquor were found in his body,” IGP claimed.

Station House Officer, Anantnag, Ashfaq Aalam refuted the allegations leveled by people that Bilal Ahmed Dar was in police custody. “People can say anything as they don’t know reality. I tell you with authority that he was not arrested by police while his dead body was found on Railway Track and there were no torture marks on his body,” SHO said adding that police did not beat KNT reporter and neither snatched his camera.

Meanwhile, a case under section 174 CrPc has been registered by police in this regard. A police handout reads that police recovered a dead body of one Bilal Ahmad Dar son of Abdul Samad Dar resident of Munghal near Railway track Munghal, Anantnag today.

“Police have taken cognizance and started inquest proceedings under section 174 CrPC in the incident. Postmortem has been conducted on the body and handed over to his legal heirs. According to the preliminary investigation, no mark of violence has been found on his body,” the handout said. [KNT]

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