Indian troops shot at and martyred a civilian in Budgam district of Indian-held Kashmir on Wednesday, sparking heavy protests in the area against the brutalities of the Indian security forces.
Merajuddin was killed after Indian Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) fired on his vehicle near Kawoosa Khalisa in Narbal area of the district. The bullets hit him in chest. He was shifted to SHMS hospital, Srinagar, where Dr Nazir Chaudhary, medical superintendent of the hospital, confirmed that the youth was brought dead.
The New York Times, quoting family sources of Merajuddin, denied the police account, saying the victim did not drive through any checkpoints, instead Indian soldiers first stopped him and then shot him dead. The newspaper in its report particularly mentioned the narrative of the youth’s father Ghulam Nabi Shah, which countered the police’s version, who had claimed that the youth was killed when his car didn’t stop at the checkpoint despite warning shots. As news of Merajuddin’s death spread in his village, hundreds of men and women took to streets in anger and began chanting ‘Go India, go back’ and ‘We want freedom’ slogans. As the troops moved in to stop the villagers from marching, hundreds threw stones at the troops, who fired shotgun pellets and tear gas to quell the protests.
According to other reports, for the last three days, the occupational troops and police personnel have been appearing in Nasrullah Pora village of Badgam district and running amok, damaging public property, beating locals and arresting people before leaving the area. Some reports say that the troops and police personnel have looted 27 shops, including hardware stores and gas cylinders, damaged 162 vehicles and 42 houses as well as breaking window panes of nearly 800 homes in the village in last three days. The villagers said the forces either looted or destroyed their valuable possessions, including cash, electronic appliances, furniture, cooking gas cylinders and jewellery during the raids.
The lives and properties of the people in occupied valley of Kashmir are unsafe due to heavy presence of Indian troops and police. Barging into houses, harassing and arresting the residents and vandalizing property is a routine matter for the occupational forces. Besides killing 95,548 Kashmiris since January 1989 till April 30, 2020, the Indian troops have injured hundreds of thousand civilians, arrested 159,602 and destroyed 109,506 structures.
The fascist Modi government is leaving no stone unturned to make lives of Kashmiris a hell. However, despite facing the worst kind of Indian atrocities, the people of the occupied valley are committed to take their freedom movement to its logical conclusion. The Indian state terrorism in the occupied territory is also a challenge for the world community, which must come forward to save the Kashmiris from the Indian atrocities. Hurriyat leaders have denounced the reign of terror unleashed by Indian forces in every nook and corner of the territory. Jammu and Kashmir Muslim Conference Chairman Shabbir Ahmad Dar said that Indian occupational forces are killing Kashmiris with impunity. He called upon the international community to play its role in stopping Indian atrocities in the occupied territory. He also condemned the killing of Merajuddin by CRPF in Narbal area of Badgam district on Wednesday.