Srigar, Feb 24: Traffic was restored on Srigar-Jammu tiol highway on Wednesday after an attack by militants in Pampore town of south Kashmir forced its closure for four days. Markets remained closed for the fourth day in Pampore, 10 km from Srigar city, but the traffic was restored through the town. Protests rocked Pampore town for three days after a fierce gunfight between three holed up guerrillas and security forces at the Jammu and Kashmir Entrepreneurship Development Institute (JKEDI).
As many as nine people were killed in the 48-hour long gunfight. The victims were a civilian, three army soldiers, two paramilitary troopers, and three guerrillas belonging to Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) outfit, who were citizens of Pakistan. The authorities imposed restrictions on movement of people in Pampore for three days while the gunfight continued, but protestors kept on defying the curbs by pelting stones at police and central police force (CRPF) troopers deployed to keep them away from the site of the gunfight.
The authorities in Kashmir Valley have battled a new dimension of separatist violence during the last few months, especially in south Kashmir’s Pulwama district. Despite repeated advisories by police on restrictions at the places where the security forces were engaged in the gunfight, people were trying to breach cordons by resorting to heavy stone pelting at the security men to distract and disrupt them. During a gunfight between the holed up militants and security forces in Kakapora area of Pulwama district on February 15, civilians resorted to violence against security personnel. Two civilians, 23-year Shaista and 22-year old Danish, were killed reportedly by stray bullets. (IANS)