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Clashes, curfew, tension in parts of Jammu and Kashmir
Saturday July 20, 2013 0:28 AM, IANS

Sporadic clashes between agitating mobs and security forces despite curfew restrictions marred life across the Valley Friday. Three districts of Chenab Valley in the Jammu region were also affected.

Two protesters sustained pellet injuries during protests in Kruhama village in north Kashmir Ganderbal district.

Both the injured people were removed to Sher-e-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences Soura (SKIMS) in Srinagar city, where doctors said they were out of danger.

Protesters also defied curfew restrictions in Beehama, Duderhama and Fatehpora areas of Ganderbal district, where security forces intervened with batons and tear gas canisters to disperse unruly mobs.

Protests also erupted in Shopian and Dooru towns in south Kashmir, where people clashed with security forces.

Clashes erupted at many places in old city areas of Srinagar despite the imposition of curfew by the authorities.

Two security men were injured in a stone pelting incident in Nowshera area of the city, and were shifted to hospital for treatment.

After persuasion from the authorities, the locals Friday morning buried the bodies of four people killed in firing by Border Security Force personnel in Gool area of Ramban Thursday, while people protested the alleged desecration of a place of worship.

Authorities had imposed curfew in Srinagar, Badgam, Ganderbal and Bandipora districts and many other sensitive towns in the Valley to maintain law and order Friday.

The state cabinet, which met here under the chairmanship of Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, sanctioned an ex-gratia cash relief of Rs.5 lakh for the next of kin of those slain in the Ramban clashes.

The cabinet also decided Friday that one member of each bereaved family would be given a government job.

The state cabinet has condemned the "use of excessive force by security men" during Thursday's protests in Ramban.

The Border Security Force (BSF) camp in the area was removed by the authorities and personnel of Jammu and Kashmir Armed Police were posted at the camp in Gool village.

A complete shutdown was observed in Kishtwar, Bhaderwah and Doda towns of Jammu region Friday. These hilly districts are together known as the Chenab Valley districts.

Traffic on the strategic Jammu-Srinagar highway was suspended by the authorities because of tensions in Batote, Chanderkote, Bannihal, Qazigund and some other towns throug which the over 300-kilometre highway passes.

No Amarnath-bound pilgrim was allowed to leave Jammu for the Valley Friday, but authorities said the pilgrims were allowed to proceed towards the cave shrine from both north Kashmir Baltal and south Kashmir Nunwan (Pahalgam) base camps.

A senior police officer said the law and order situation remained peaceful, by and large, in the state Friday.

"The situation would be reviewed in the evening to take a final call on the curfew that was imposed in many areas today", the officer said.

Separatists have asked people to continue the protest shutdown Saturday as well.

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