A Night of Fear in Kulgam Village

August 18

Shah Shahid

The Locals of the Bhan area in Quimoh tehsil of South Kashmir’s Kulgam District have accused the Indian Army of committing excesses against the local populace of the area.

Speaking to The Kashmiriyat the locals said that the forces barged into the village after a minor stone throwing incident nearby and smashed everything that met their eye.

“Four Load carriers, Two Tractors, Four Cars, One passenger bus, one JCB was damaged in the action of the forces before they started smashing the window panes of at least a fifty houses,” a Local Shahid Ahmed told The Kashmiriyat.

He said that three shops were looted in the area and almost doors of half of the households in the village were broken by the forces.

The Locals alleged that the troops also barged into the Jamia Masjid of the area and announced on the loudspeakers asking the men of the area to come out around 10 pm.

Later the locals were gathered in the ground of a local mosque and asked to sit down, some of the locals were frisked and some asked to disclose their identities.

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“Around 10:45 pm, some of us were thrashed to pulp by the Forces without any mercy, even some old men were assaulted by the forces,” a local resident who wished not to be named told The Kashmiriyat.

“Mai CO Bol Raha hun 9 RR Ka, Ladko Ko Hamare Hawale Kar Lo, Warna Hum Nahin Niklenge Yahan Se, (I am the CEO of 9 RR, hand over the youth to us, otherwise we won’t leave from here,” locals quoted the CEO as announcing from the Masjid loudspeaker.

The Locals claimed that three youth from the locality identified as Amir Hussain Bhat, Fasil Bashir Sheikh and Faisal Nazir were arrested by the Army.

“We were not concerned about people being beaten to pulp, but about the safety of our women back home,” the local said.

Such Nights had be only witnessed in the early 90s during the peak of Militancy, he said.

“Finally we breathed relief and ran to our houses at around 1130 pm when Army finally left the village,” a local told The Kashmiriyat.

The Locals in Anchar area of Soura in Srinagar meanwhile staged nocturnal protests as the news of Bhan Kulgam spread in the area.

Demanding an end to the siege, the locals shouted slogans against the atrocities being committed in the area.

The Spokesman of the Indian Army while speaking to The Kashmiriyat said that a joint operation was launched in the Bhan area but the allegations of the wreckage and assault of civilians are totally baseless.

“Yes there was a Joint operation in place, however the Army has conducted no atrocities against the general public in the Bhan Village,” he told The Kashmiriyat over phone.