Clashes erupted between youths and security forces in Pulwama town on Wednesday following last night’s death of a Class 12 student due to bullet injuries at Ganawpora village in Shopian district of South Kashmir.
The army and CRPF had launched a cordon and search operation in the village late last evening when the boy, Adil Magray, along with a group of youth, allegedly started pelting the security forces with stones to facilitate the terrorists escape.
Police said that the boy received bullet injury in the abdomen during a brief exchange of fire. He was brought to the district hospital where he succumbed to his injuries. A large number of people turned up at the burial of Adil on Wednesday morning but the rituals remained peaceful.
Separatist leader Mirwaiz Umer Farooq tried to further instigate the youth by uploading provocative messages on his social media account. One of his tweets described death of the boy as “cold-blooded murder of a budding 19-year-old student Adil was committed by the Indian security forces who have been given free hand to kill”.
The separatists have given the call for “Kashmir bandh” on Friday to protest against “killing” of the boy. On Wednesday, youths pelted cops with stones and brickbats in Pulwama town where shops remained shut. Shopian town also observed shutdown. The police exercised restraint and fired teargas shells to disperse the unruly mob.
Reports said that students of the Islamic University of Science and Technology also came out to protest against the death.
It has become difficult for the security forces to cordon villages in search of terrorists as large number of youth turn up at the spot. Three stone pelters were killed in March when security forces opened fire to chase them away from a cordon site.
To prevent such incidents at encounter sites, the district magistrates of all districts in Kashmir had issued orders that the Section 144 prohibiting people to assemble in the area will automatically come in force within the radius of 3 km of any encounter site. However, this has failed to deter the youth.