#Day86: Paddy, Cowsheds Go Up In Flames In Kulgam Villages After Arrests, Massive Restrictions Imposed

   
Cops manning deserted roads in Khudwani (Humshalibugh)
Cops manning deserted roads in Khudwani (Humshalibugh), a file picture 

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Infuriated by a “crackdown” during which the security grid arrested seven youth and allegedly set afire paddy stocks, a couple of “sheds”, a “single story house” and left nearly 40 vehicles in a damaged state beyond repairs, massive clashes erupted in Khudwani-Koimoh belt of Kulgam, reports from Islamabad said. Police have imposed curfew like restrictions but tensions are hugely up.

The actions triggered a serious retaliation from the locals. Police said the two sides are engaged in a adding-ding battle even as a truck went up in flames near Khudwani, on the main road linking Shopian / Kulgam with Islamabad. It was not immediately known if the truck was carrying any fruit or was on its way to get the load.

Details revealed that army, CRPF and police had literally taken a vast belt comprising Hawoora, Mishpora, Khudwani and Kaimoh in a siege. Apparently the objective was to arrest some people who were behind the recent protests. They arrested seven persons but left the belt in serious crisis as they allegedly used shells to trigger fires in granaries, and homes. Locals alleged that the forces used all kind of force to destroy “not less than forty” automobiles including cars and bikes. “These automobiles are in a situation that they would require almost an equal investment in repairs than their overall cost,” one resident said on phone.

In reaction of this incident, reports said, the entire belt came out in protest. They clashed with the police that fired tear smoke shells and pump guns. It was in this mille that a truck went up in flames. It was not immediately known who lit the fire.

Police sources said army is patrolling the area but the clashes are going on. The entire belt is part of Kulgam district.

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