Clashes erupt in Srinagar; 20 injured including photojournalist Ahmer Khan

Photograph by Adnan Bhat

Clashes erupted today between the government forces and young protesters in Nowhatta area of Srinagar and Anantnag areas of Kashmir valley soon after congregational Friday prayers were over.

Twenty civilians and a photojournalist were injured in Nowhatta when violent clashes rocked the area. Police resorted to the use of pellets and tear smoke shelling to disperse angry protesters.

A photojournalist, Ahmer Khan, received injury in foot and he was treated at the SMHS hospital later.

Eyewitnesses said that soon after congregation Friday prayers were over hundreds of youth came out of the Jamia Masjid in Nowhatta and attacked government forces with stones who responded with firing pellets and tear smoke shells inside the vicinity of the mosque’s surrounding market.

“Two boys received facial injuries due to pellets,” an eyewitness said, adding that there is a possibility that more people might have been injured.

Witnesses also added that announcements were made from the mosque to stop stone throwing and tell police to retreat so that the injured could be taken to hospital for immediate treatment.

Men, women and children were seen running towards safer places amid intense clashes and shelling.

Clashes were also reported from Anantnag district of South Kashmir. Reports reaching were that youth threw stones at the government forces deployed around the grand mosque of the district, while shouting pro-freedom slogans. According to the witnesses, police resorted to pellet and tear smoke shelling.

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