M A I N   N E W S

Kishtwar violence spreads to Jammu, Rajouri areas
Curfew imposed at several places
Bandh cripples life in Jammu region
Ravi Krishnan Khajuria & Arteev Sharma
Tribune News Service

Amarnath, Machail yatras suspended from Jammu

Pilgrimage to the Amarnath cave shrine in south Kashmir and the Machail yatra in the Paddar area of Kishtwar suspended from Jammu as a precautionary measure

The Jammu-Pathankot, Jammu-Srinagar and the Jammu-Poonch highways remain blocked

Train traffic disrupted on Jammu-Pathankot route

Jammu, August 10
A day after communal clashes left two persons dead and 34 others injured in Kishtwar, tension mounted in other parts of the state on Saturday, forcing authorities to impose curfew in the border district of Rajouri and the municipal limits of Jammu city.

Fresh clashes erupted in the Paddar-Gulabgarh area of Kishtwar district in which at least three persons were injured. Rajouri Deputy Commissioner Faqir Chand Bhagat said: "Curfew was imposed in Rajouri late on Saturday following communal tension." Sources said the district administration had sought the Army's help.

Jammu Deputy Commissioner AK Sahu said curfew was clamped around 11 pm within the municipal limits of the city. "The entire town is not curfew-bound," he said. Sources said violent protests in Jammu (west) prompted authorities to enforce curfew.

The police had to fire smoke shells to disperse violent mobs in New Plots and Sarwal areas.

Normal life was thrown out of gear in the entire Jammu region following a complete shutdown to protest Friday's clashes at Kishtwar. Anger spilled on to streets in the state's winter capital city, as several places witnessed clashes between the police and mobs, leaving a dozen injured, including some policemen, reports said.

On fresh clashes in Paddar-Gulabgarh area of Kishtwar town, IGP Jammu zone Rajesh Kumar said: "More police personnel were rushed after a clash left three people injured in the Padder area".

Reports said rival groups torched some houses in Paddar, a village about 60 km north of Kishtwar town.

In Kathua, an angry mob blocked the Jammu-Pathankot highway at Kalibari for two hours, resulting in a long traffic jam.

In violence-hit Kishtwar town, a strict curfew was enforced today and the situation was described as tense.

Besides disrupting rail traffic on the Jammu-Pathankot route, mobs burnt tyres and blocked Jammu-Srinagar and Jammu-Poonch highways at several places.

Rail services were disrupted on Saturday on the Jammu-Pathankot route as mobs stopped a train at the Kathua railway station, some 90 km from Jammu.

"Curfew is being enforced strictly and the situation is under control in Kishtwar," said state Home Secretary Suresh Kumar, adding the Army was patrolling the roads.

The four people injured in yesterday's clashes in Kishtwar were being treated for gunshot wounds and were reported to be stable. Udhampur Deputy Commissioner Yasha Mudgil said, "They are in the ICU of the Command Hospital in Udhampur where one of them was operated upon by Army surgeons. They are out of danger," she said.

(With inputs from Ranjit Thakur in Rajouri and RK Kichlu in Batote)





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