Caged Shopian Breathes

KL Report

SRINAGAR

Curfew was lifted on Wednesday in Shopian’s Apple Town area which was reeling under curfew for 11 consecutive days after massive protests and demonstrations against the CRPF men started in the area over five innocent killings.

Deputy Commissioner, Shopian, Bashir Ahmed Bhat while talking to GNS said, we have relaxed curfew in the district due to improvement in situation. “If the area remains calm then we will lift the restrictions completely,” he said.

“As we have already informed locals and eyewitnesses of the firing incident on September 7 and September 11 to come forward and record their statements but as of now no one came forward to do so,” DC added.

Zahoor Ahmed, a local from Gagren area while talking to GNS said, we were being allowed to move outside our homes after a period of 11 days. “We were being caged like wild animals are kept in zoo,” he said.

He said replacing arms with arms is not our demand. “They are sending CRPF to other places and replacing them with Jammu and Kashmir Armed Police (JKAP). Our demand is to demilitarize the Gagren area and bring culprits to book,” Zahoor added.

South Kashmir’s Shopian was under curfew after CRPF personnel opened unprovoked firing on September 7 in which three locals and an alleged militant were killed. Curfew was first clamped in Shopian district on September 8 following wide-spread clashes in the area over the innocent killings.

The prohibitory orders were lifted on September 11 but curfew was re-imposed in the town next day following clashes between the protesters and security forces which led to the killing of another youth, taking the toll to five.

It is pertinent to mention here that on September 7, Valley was observing complete shutdown call given by pro-freedom groups against the Zubin Mehta’s musical concert.

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