11 dead in Kashmir
By Zafar Meraj
SRINAGAR: Eleven people were killed and over 50 injured in two explosions in Held Kashmir on Wednesday, while five people died separately as violence escalated ahead of India’s Independence Day.
At least 45 people were wounded in a powerful blast near a restaurant at the crowded Bandipora Chowk. A police spokesman said initial investigations suggested militants had triggered an explosive device attached to a bicycle near the restaurant.
Al-Mansoorain militants group claimed responsibility. A spokesman for the group claimed five BSF personnel and two soldiers were ‘either killed or seriously injured’ in the blast.
Meanwhile, eight civilians were injured Wednesday in Kulgam town’s Qaimoh area when militants hurled a grenade at a BSF patrol.
The grenade missed its target and exploded among passers-by, police said. One of the injured later died at the hospital.
Meanwhile, militants hurled a hand grenade at the house PDP lawmaker Ghulam Hassan Khan in Shopian town of Pulwama district. However, the grenade, targeted at the personnel guarding the house, failed to explode and was defused later.
Indian troops shot dead two militants in the Kupwara district overnight, a police spokesman said.
Two more militants were shot dead by Indian troops in two encounters Wednesday in Pulwama and Anantnag districts, police said. A civilian was killed in the crossfire during one of the gunbattles. Indian troops also arrested Ghulam Hassan Mir, a Hizbul Mujahideen commander, in Kupwara district, police said.