Pulwama gunfight: Civilian shot dead in protests

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Srinagar: A civilian was killed during protests between youth and the government forces in Beighpora village of Awantipora in south Kashmir, after the killing of Riyaz Naikoo, the operational commander-in-chief of Hizbul Mujahideen.

Sources in the district police and administration confirmed the killing to The Kashmir Walla. Due to the on going suspension of mobile network and internet in Kashmir since yesterday this report got delayed.

Jahangir Yousuf Wani, 32, son of Mohamamd Yousuf, a resident of Uthmula, was hit by a bullet in his neck, after the government forces opened live ammunition on the protestors near the gunfight site, one of his neighbours told The Kashmir Walla. He died on the spot and is survived by two children and a wife.

At least four other people suffered bullet injuries and 21 others were admitted to the hospitals with pellet wounds, official sources were quoted saying.

Also read: Pellet-hit, bloodied, face with no name: Inside hospital after Pulwama gunfight 

Wani was buried in his ancestral graveyard after the necessary formalities were completed by the hospital authorities, the officials told PTI.

All phone lines — except government-run BSNL — were snapped on Wednesday afternoon, while the mobile internet services remained shut.

Taking a cue from North Kashmir where authorities did not hand over the body of a 14-year-old boy who was killed in crossfire to his family members to avoid a large gathering at the funeral, the local residents kept the death of the civilian a secret till the time of his burial.

On Wednesday, the government forces shot dead Naikoo, and his associate, Adil Bhat, in a gunfight in Beighpora. Naikoo was one of the longest surviving militants of Hizbul Mujahideen, who took over the command of the outfit after killing of Yasin Itoo in August 2017. Naikoo and his associate were buried in Sonamarg area of Central Kashmir.

In a separate gunfight in south Kashmir, the government forces also killed two more militants, who were affiliated with Lashkar-e-Taiba, as per the police. 

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