Reyaz Rashid

Groups clash in Pattan area

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Nearly 30 booked for disrupting law and order 

Pattan, Baramulla: Police had to use force and fire teargas shells to disperse the frenzy mob after two community groups clashed at Gund Khawaja Qasim in Pattan area of North Kashmir’s Baramulla district on Friday.

Following disruption of the law and order situation, police booked at least thirty persons including three of its cops for allegedly violating the restrictions that were put in place and ransacking public property including a Masjid, thereby creating law and order situation in Pattan, sources said.

They said that four persons including a policeman were injured after some people pelted stones on police at Gund Khawaja Qasim Pattan near Imambara.

Witnesses said, “Clashes erupted during a religious congregation despite the restrictions were already placed in by police. One group tried to lead the religious function while another group raised objections resulting into clashes. Some people pelted stones on police when they tried to disperse them.”

Police had to use several tear-smoke shells to disperse the protesters.

A police official said that there were apprehensions that clashes may take place and that is why they had imposed restrictions. He said that some people resorted to stone-pelting when police tried to bring the situation under control after two groups clashed with each other.

Pertinently, police barred former MLA Abid Hussain Ansari from taking part in that religious function and placed him under house arrest.

Ansari tweeted that: “As per the schedule, I was supposed to attend the Majlis-E-Hussaini (as) at Gund Khawaja Qasim (Pattan) today, but unfortunately I have been placed under house arrest by the District Administration for a reason better known to them.”

“What a sad state of affairs, our religious obligations are being intruded by some officers for their personal gains! Is this what we call democracy,” he questioned.

Police sources said that at least thirty people were booked under FIR number 274/2020 under sections 307,145,148 and 149 in police station Pattan for violating restrictions that were put in place to prevent people from attending the religious gathering in view of Covid-19 pandemic.

Sources said that the personal driver of former MLA is among the thirty booked by police. Among the dozens people booked, four people including three cops of Jammu and Kashmir Police have been detained at Police Station Pattan.

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