India: 24 injured as clashes break out between students, security forces in Srinagar
The violence broke out as colleges in the city reopened following clashes last week between students and government forces. Photograph: (Reuters)
Twenty-four people, including 12 security personnel, were injured today in clashes between stone-pelting students and law enforcing agencies in the heart of Srinagar, on a day colleges reopened in Kashmir after a five-day shutdown ordered by the government.
A number of upmarket areas in the heart of Srinagar city virtually turned into a battleground today as students clashed with police, on a day colleges reopened in Kashmir after a five-day shutdown ordered by the government.
A police spokesman said the security forces came under heavy stone-pelting which resulted in injuries to 12 personnel including three officers.
"The miscreants and the students pelted stones on Traffic Headquarters and attacked police vehicles with stones clubs and lathis. The police showed utmost restraint," he said.
"Some boys involved in stone-pelting were caught on the spot and detained by police," the spokesman said, adding the mob was dispersed and normalcy restored in the area.
Police had to fire dozens of tear smoke shells in an attempt to disperse the stone-pelting students from SP College and the adjoining Women's College on MA Road, officials said.
They said the clashes emanated from SP College and soon spread to the streets of Regal Chowk and adjoining areas.
The students from the Women's College also joined the protests, which spread to other parts of the commercial hub, the officials said.
The cops also fired a couple of aerial shots but it was not clear whether live ammunition or rubber bullets were used.
The clashes led to the closure of the markets and the people rushed to safer locations out of the commercial hub, the officials said.
The violence was witnessed on a day the colleges reopened in the valley after a gap of five days.
The authorities had shut the higher educational institutions as a precautionary measure in the wake of widespread violence by the students in Kashmir on Monday against the alleged high-handedness of security forces with students in Pulwama on April 15.