Protests in Pampore after arrests

Excelsior Correspondent
SRINAGAR, Apr 15: Normal life was paralyzed in the saffron rich town of Pampore today following stone pelting by a group of youth on the police after the latter carried out nocturnal raids in the town during the past two days. The people carried out protests on the Srinagar-Jammu national highway only to be dispersed by police and security forces.
At least two youth have been arrested during the raids and one of the arrested persons has been injured due to beating up by the police. Most of the shops remained closed in the town for some hours and situation became normal only late in the day.
Reports reaching here said that the police raided many houses in Pampore while searching for the youth who were involved in different incidents of stone pelting during 2008 and 2010. The youth being looked for by the police have been arrested for stone pelting incidents and since then they have been released as well.
On last Friday evening a contingent of police personnel of police station Pampore raided many houses in some of the localities of the town. The police personnel barged into these houses and ransacked the belongings of the people living in the area. The locals raised their protest against the raids and condemned the police action.
One youth was arrested during these raids and he was sent to police remand. The youth has been beaten to pulp and he suffered grievous injuries in the beating up incident. He has been taken to SKIMS-Soura for treatment where his condition is stated to be stable.
The police action on Friday led to resentment among the locals and they converged on the main road while raising slogans against the police personnel. On Saturday night the police cops raided yet another house and arrested Tauseef Ahmad, who runs a readymade garments shop in the area.
Tauseef was a stone pelter and was arrested by police for his role in fomenting trouble in the Pampore area during the 2010 summer agitation. However, after his release from the jail he got busy with his own business and was not involved in any further anti-state activities. His arrest led to further trouble in the Pampore area today and people most youth came out in the morning and raised protest against his arrest.
The protesters reached the Srinagar-Jammu national highway and carried out protest demonstrations there as well. Before this they forced closure of the shops located in the different localities of the Pampore town. The situation turned volatile and in no time reinforcements of police and CRPF were rushed to the area.
The police and security forces personnel swooped on the protesters resulting into the dispersal of the protesters. However, before this there were pitched battles between the two sides. The ding-dong battles carried out for some hours and the situation turned normal late in the day.
In the evening police personnel sealed the garments shop of Tauseef. His uncle’s mobile phone has also been seized by the police and people term this action as an act of victimization by the police.