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SRINAGAR

Apparently in a bid to fail a local political gathering in Pinjoora village of Shopian, hundreds of cops and paramilitary men are engaged in a battle with residents. Shells are going on as intermittent live rounds were fired in air are adding to the overall tensions. A similar clash is going on in Fatehpore belt of south Kashmir’s Islamabad district.

The twin incidents coincided with the start of the two-day visit of all party delegation. The delegation led by Home Minister Rajnath Singh is about to land in Srinagar.

Reports reaching from the sprawling village said that a major rally was planned there for which the locals were making preparations for last few days. In fact a few thousand people had reached the village in anticipation of the event only last night.

People fearing the police intervention had blocked all the entries into the village. It is accessible from at least six sides.

The police did come and the operation started quite early, around 6 am. Residents said that the cops and the paramilitary men are removing the obstacles and have entered the village from at least two sides. They were confronted by the locals.

Cops used tear smoke shells and pellets. Besides, locals said, the cops also fired live rounds.

Residents who spoke to Kashmir Life said a number of people were injured.

Hospital sources in Shopian told Kashmir Life that seven injured have reached them and all of them are carrying pellet injuries. “There is no access to the village and the only route available for movements is which the cops used to reach there,” one source said. “All other routes are still closed.”

Reports said that the police, with CRPF and the army, are already in control of the venue in the village, a park. But the locals have created two alternative venues where they may assemble. Locals had pitched tents in the park to host the guests from the entire belt.

Reports of tensions in the Penjoora have triggered serious tensions in Shopian town. Poeple have started coming out, reports said.

Meanwhile reports from Fatehpora in Islamabad said that police have started a clash with locals as the cops do not want a rally to take place at Larkipora.

“Almost a dozen people are reported injured already,” reports said. “The people are adamant that they will hold the rally and the police is not willing to permit them.”

(Sheikh Hilal and Akaash Hassan reported for this copy from Shopian and Islamabad)

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