Srinagar: At least 54 students were injured in Government Degree College Pulwama Saturday afternoon during clashes between security forces and students when two police vehicles stopped at the gate of the college.
Eyewitness students said that two police vehicles stopped at the entrance of the college which provoked the students as they apprehended that the police had come to arrest students a day after an army vehicle’s entrance into the college was objected to by them.
The students said that the students hooted at the policemen who in return abused them back.
“As more students gathered, the police fired teargas shells into the college premises, which provoked more students to protest and shout slogans against the police. As the gathering grew in number, more forces arrived and fired teargas shells and pellets. The students started pelting stones and the forces fired more teargas shells and pellets,” they said, adding that due to shelling and beating of students, mayhem and chaotic situation occurred outside the college.
Employees in District Hospital Pulwama said that it was chaos in the hospital as the rush of the injured was too high to treat. They said that forces fired into the hospital premises due to which more chaos prevailed.
Medical Superintendent of the Pulwama Hospital, Dr Abdul Rashid Parra informed that 54 injured students were treated in the hospital.
“Most of the injured were girl students, who had fainted or received bruises during the mayhem and violence. Three of the students were critically injured and they were referred to SMHS and SKIMS,” Dr. Para revealed.
Senior Superintendent of Police, Pulwama district, Rayees Muhammad Bhat said that 30 students have been injured; only three of them were injured due to pellets and teargas shells. “Two were injured due to pellets and one has a head injury,” Bhat added.
Explaining the situation, the SSP said that students pelted stones on police and CRPF, which were there as a naka party. “The naka party, including two police vehicles and CRPF, is everyday placed nearly 200 meters away from the college for anti-militancy purposes, not to arrest students of the college,” he said, adding that a video is being circulated on social networking sites and is being falsely attributed to Pulwama situation.
“We are investigating why the party was attacked today. May be it was pre-planned to create a situation in view of the parliamentary elections,” he said.
Meanwhile, a police statement said that a normal naka was established around 200 meters away from Degree College Pulwama. “As class work ended, some miscreants started pelting stones at the naka party. To handle the stone pelting, a reinforcement was rushed to the spot. The mob swelled as more students joined and pelted stones on the forces. In this incident, some miscreants and police personnel were injured. One was referred to Srinagar hospital where his condition is stable,” the statement said.
The District Police administration has clarified that no raids were conducted and video being shared on social networking groups is not from Pulwama, the statement said.
Meanwhile, as soon as the news spread in the town, the shops and business establishments were shut and clashes erupted at Murran Chowk. The traffic movement also came to a halt in the town. (KNS)