Monday, August 09, 2010

Kashmir burns again as India responds to dissent with violence

The hospitals are filling up with gunshot victims but angry protesters say the world is blind to their plight. Andrew Buncombe reports from Srinagar

The Independent/UK, August 7, 2010

From the end of the hospital corridor came frantic shouts, urgent voices that grew ever more desperate.
A dozen men appeared, gathered around a blood-smeared trolley, rushing its occupant towards the emergency surgery room. Abdul Rashid, said his friends, had been shot in the head by police who had opened fire on a peaceful gathering. “There was no stone-pelting, nothing,” yelled one of the 25-year-old’s friends, as medics pulled shut the doors to the surgery room. “There was no curfew … They fired indiscriminately.”

Once again, Kashmir is burning. Buildings and barricades have been set alight and its people are enflamed. The largest towns are packed with heavily-armed police and the hospital wards are full of young men with gunshot wounds. Around 50 people have been killed since June, more than 31 in the last week alone, and dozens more have been wounded. The dead include young men, teenagers and even a nine-year-old boy, reportedly beaten to death by the security forces after he tried to walk to the local shop.

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