Srinagar/Pulwama, Mar 3: Massive protests broke out in different parts of the Valley on Sunday soon after the word about Kashmiri student being found dead in his hostel room in Hyderabad spread.
Muddasir Ahmed Malla son of Ghulam Qadir Malla of Parigam Pulwama, pursuing his doctorate at Central Institute of English and Foreign Languages (CIEFL) in Hyderabad was found hanging in his hostel room on Saturday evening.
Massive protests and clashes broke out at Pulwama in south Kashmir and other adjoining areas as the news spread.
Reports said that hundreds of youth raising pro-freedom slogans took to the streets and staged massive demonstrations. Mourners alleged that Muddasir was murdered. Police and paramilitary CRPF men swung into action and resorted to baton charge to disperse the protesters, who retaliated with stones triggering clashes which continued till afternoon.
Protests and clashes also broke out in neighboring Shopian town. Youth fought pitched battles with the force personnel near Gagran till late in the evening.
Officials said paramilitary CRPF men resorted to teargas shelling in Tahab area of Pulwama district when youth tried staging a demonstration. “They pelted stones on CRPF camp following which our men fired teargas shells to disperse them,” a CRPF official said.
Meanwhile, Superintendent of Police (SP) Pulwama, Amit Kumar told Greater Kashmir that protests erupted at two places soon after the news spread. “Nobody was injured,” he said and added, “Forces exercised maximum restrain while dealing with the situation.”
The SP said Muddasir’s body would arrive in Pulwama on Monday. “Body is in Delhi and after certain formalities it would arrive either in the morning or afternoon,” he said and added that security has been beefed up in the district to deal with the situation.
Reports of protests and spontaneous shutdown were also received from south Kashmir’s Kulgam district. Youth took to the streets at Kulgam town and Chawalgam and clashed with police and paramilitary forces.
Locals alleged that forces barged into several houses in Asthan Mohallah and smashed the window panes and beat up the inmates.
In Srinagar, protests broke out in Rajouri Kadal, Sekiddafer, Nowhatta, Kawdara and some other localities of old city soon after the word about Muddasir’s death spread.
Groups of youth raising pro-freedom slogans took to streets and staged demonstrations demanding probe into his death. Police and paramilitary CRPF men resorted to baton charge to disperse the protesters who retaliated with stones triggering clashes that continued for more than two hours.
Protests also broke out in some areas of central Kashmir’s Budgam district. The protests were held in Budgam town and Chari-e-Sharief. Protestors were raising pro-freedom slogans and were demanding investigations into Muddasir’s mysterious death in Hyderabad.
Reports from north Kashmir’s Naidkhai area said that soon after the word about Muddasir’s death spread hundreds of youths took to the streets and staged protests. However, police and paramilitary CRPF men resorted to force to quell the protesters who retaliated with stones triggering clashes.
Reports of protests were also received from Trehgam area of Kupwara district. Reports said that hundreds of protesters Sunday evening took to streets and held demonstrations against the death of Muddasir. They were raising pro-freedom slogans and were demanding impartial probe into the incident.
Meanwhile, a Police spokesman said the situation remained peaceful throughout the Kashmir Valley today. “A couple of incidents of stone pelting were reported from Koil in Pulwama and Naidkhai Bandipora. Police exercised maximum restraint while dealing with the miscreants. There are no reports of injury to anybody.”
PARIGAM MOURNS MUDDASIR’S DEATH
Pall of gloom descended over Muddasir’s native village Parigam on Sunday as the word about his death spread.
Residents of Parigam and other adjoining areas rushed towards the house of the deceased to mourn his death and express solidarity with the bereaved family.
Ghulam Qadir Malla, father of late Mudasir, while talking to Greater Kashmir said, “Last evening we got a call from some students who informed us about Muddasir was found hanging in his room.”
“I told them that we will come there but they said they will themselves bring his body home. I do not know who the students were and how will they bring my son’s body,” Malla said and broke down.
He refused to accept that his son had committed suicide. “He was a very religious minded boy and there is no possibility of him ending his life,” he said. “My son has been murdered without any reason. He was a very obedient son to us. He was very kind to his four sisters also. We had lots of expectations from him.”
“I had seen my son on last Eid and from many months I had not met him. We used to talk to him over phone. But from past four days we did not receive any call from his side,” Malla added.
Ashiq Hussain, elder brother of the deceased, said: “Muddasir had some arguments with his batch mate and a professor who later handed him over to the local police.”
“Mudasir was in police custody for three days. After that he was found dead in his hostel room. It is a murder,” alleged Ashiq.
Ashiq denied that Muddasir had led the protests in Hyderabad against the hanging of Muhammad Afzal Guru. “My brother was religious minded boy but he had not led the protests there. However, he had entered into heated arguments with his batch mate regarding the Kashmir issue which perhaps could have led to his death.”
Ashiq said that six students from Pune University have gone to Hyderabad and they have informed them that they would bring his body home.