36 injured in clashes in Indian-controlled Kashmir over Guru's hanging
At least 36 people were injured in Indian-controlled Kashmir Saturday during violent clashes and protests that broke out over the execution of Indian parliament attack convict Mohammed Afzal Guru, police said.
The clashes broke out in Sopore and Baramulla towns, northwest of Srinagar city, the summer capital of Indian-controlled Kashmir after the Indian authorities hanged Guru to death in Tihar jail of New Delhi on Saturday morning.
"Thirty six persons including 23 policemen were injured in these incidents," said a police spokesman. "Police exercised maximum restrain while dispersing the protesters." But he said situation by and large was peaceful in the region.
Deputy Commissioner of Baramulla, Khawaja Ghulam Ahmad, told media that 12 persons were wounded in Sopore and Baramulla towns.
All the wounded persons have fire arms wounds," said a health official posted in Baramulla district hospital.
The authorities in the early morning imposed indefinite and strict curfew fearing violent protests and clashes.
The restrictions are being enforced by hundreds of policemen and India's paramilitary Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel deployed in full-riot gears.
These men laid concertina wire and barricades on the roads in major towns to restrict movement of people.
The region's Chief Minister Omar Abdullah Saturday made an appeal for calm to the people.
Officials have blocked the internet service on mobile phones and data cards and snapped the cable TV network service in the region.
Police at several places fired warning shots in air to disperse the people trying to defy restrictions.
Guru, a Kashmiri resident, was convicted by the Indian authorities for his role in the December 2001 attack on India's parliament house, which killed several Indian security personnel and five attackers.
He was sentenced to death in 2004 by Indian Supreme Court. The sentence, supposed to have been carried out on Oct. 20, 2006, was however stayed after Guru's wife filed a mercy petition.
Guru is survived by his wife Tabusum and 12-year-old son Ghalib.
The attack on India parliament then brought the two nuclear neighbors India and Pakistan almost at the brink of war with each other.
Officials in New Delhi said Indian President Pranab Mukherjee rejected Guru's mercy petition on Feb. 3 and thereafter decision for his hanging was reached out.
A guerrilla war is also going on between militants and the Indian troops stationed in the region since 1989. The gunfight between militants and Indian troopers in Indian-controlled Kashmir takes place intermittently. SRINAGAR, Indian-controlled Kashmir (Xinhua)