J&K

Where are the stones? Report debunks troop's reason for killing teen

INDIA-KASHMIR-UNREST Paramilitary troopers look on as a family walk along a deserted street during a curfew in the Maisuma Area of Srinagar | AFP
  • Officials who have visited the region to take stock of the situation could not find even a single stone or a piece of brick within the vicinity of the army camp, separated from outside by two rings of barbed wires.

Latest reports emerging from Natnusa village in Kashmir's Kupwara district debunks the security force's reason for firing at a group of protesters, which killed a 17-year-old boy and left the region volatile.

Class 11 student Arif Ahmad died in a hospital on Friday after security forces opened fire at a mob they said were throwing stones at an army camp.

Three others were injured in that incident, which was reaction to the death of four people in Handwara town three days earlier, when protesters and security forces clashed over an allegation that an army personnel molested a 16-year-old schoolgirl.

However, officials who have visited the region to take stock of the situation could not find even a single stone or a piece of brick within the vicinity of the army camp, according to a report.

Besides, the officials suggest it was impossible for stones to reach the camp because of the height and perimeter of two rings of barbed wires separating it from outside, the report said.

This further strengthens locals' claim that the forces had open fire at the protestors without provocation.

"People were protesting peacefully on the road. Where are the stones and bricks if we were involved in stone throwing on the camp? Let them show if any soldier was injured in stone pelting," Ghulam Mohiudin, a local resident, was quoted as saying.

The report has Arif's father, Mohiudin Dar, saying: "Was he a jihadi? Was he a stone-pelter? Can they please tell me why he was killed? I feel I have committed sins and God has punished me."

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