Srinagar, August 4 (NIA): The Kashmir state police on Wednesday registered a case of murder against the Indian security forces following the death of a youthful demonstrator due to injuries inflicted by pellet guns. While over a hundred have been injured in the eye by pellets, this is the third reported case of death due to pellet injuries.
Greater Kashmir reported that a 23-year-old youth from the Chattabal area of Srinagar Reyaz Ahmed Shah, was killed due to pellets fired by paramilitary forces late Tuesday evening when he was returning home after finishing his duty as a guard at an ATM of the J&K Bank in the old city.
Preliminary autopsy revealed that Reyaz was hit with “almost a full cartridge of pellets” in his belly from a point-blank range, damaging his vital organs and resulting in his death on the spot.
“As per the preliminary autopsy report finding, almost a full cartridge of pellets was pumped into his belly. There was a small entry whole on the left side of his belly but there was no exit wound. His vital organs had suffered immense damage due to pellets that were all over his stomach, causing his death on the spot,” police sources, privy to initial findings of the Autopsy report, told Greater Kashmir.
As per hospital records, Reyaz’s killing is third of its kind caused due to the pellets which have been announced officially as “non-lethal means of crowd control.”
The Jammu and Kashmir police registered a case of murder against “security forces” under Section 302 vide FIR No 56/2016, the paper said.
With Reyaz’s death, the toll in the Kashmir struggle has increased to 53 in the past 26 days. Kashmir has been boiling since the killing of the Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani on July 8.
“Reyaz was a J&K Bank ATM guard at Habba Kadal. He called us at 10.30 pm and told us that he was on way to home. We tried to call him again, his phone was ringing but there was no response,” said Shakeel Ahmed, Reyaz’s brother.
Riyaz’s body was lying on roadside next to his Scooty, wearing a helmet. His body was spotted by an auto driver.
As news of Reyaz’s death spread, Chattabal and dozens of other adjoining areas erupted with massive protests soon after pre-dawn prayers. Witnesses said that people including women and children took to the streets shouting pro-freedom and pro-Islam slogans.
“He has been killed in cold-blood. There was no protest going on when he was killed. Forces have now decided to kill our youth in cold-blood,” mourners at Chattabal said.
Reyaz belongs to a poor family. “Forces snatched the main breadwinner of this poor family,” a group of wailing women said after seeing the coffin.
The slain youth was laid to rest at the martyrs’ graveyard in Srinagar’s Eidgah. Thousands of youth, women and children took to streets after police handed over the body to his family.
As news spread, people from dozens of adjoining areas that include Karanagar, Zampa Kadal, Qamarwari, Bemina, Cement Kadal, Safa Kadal, joined the funeral procession of Reyaz—defying curbs and restrictions in old Srinagar areas. . Witnesses said at Chattabal, protestors tried to attack the police station at Bagiyas with stones and bricks. The police responded with teargas shells and dispersed the protestors.