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Army resorts to aerial firing at IUST; ‘Protests started only after unprovoked firing: VC

Pulwama, Apr 26: Army resorted to massive aerial firing at Islamic University of Science and Technology (IUST) Awantipora on Thursday creating panic among students.
Reports said that army resorted to aerial firing after a couple of students pelted stones on them.
“The atmosphere was reverberated with gunshots for at least 10 minutes. Besides, firing, our campus was attacked with tear-smoke shells. Now the students have hit to highway to protest army action,” said Monisa Qadri, HoD Mass Communication Department of the University.
Reports said that students were protesting inside the campus when they observed the movement of army from the hilly side of the campus repairing some cables. Some students pelted stones on them, who retaliated with aerial firing.
They said that army fired in the air to chase away the protesting youth. However, the protesters didn’t relent and kept re-grouping.
Later, police and paramilitary forces fired tear gas to disperse the protesters, triggering further clashes.
The student later hit to Srinagar-Jammu highway and registered a strong protest against Forces action. Reports said that students demanded that Victor Force camp should be re-located from the area and furthermore, students should be allowed to form a Union.
Taking strong note of the unprovoked use of tear-gas and PAVA shells inside the campus, Vice Chancellor, IUST, Prof Mushtaq Ahmed Siddiqui said, “there was no provocation from the students as normal class work was on in the Varsity, and protests started only after firing incident led to tear gas shelling in the campus.”
A police official meanwhile issued a statement stating that Army personnel were laying /repairing the cable near Islamic University Road. They came under unprovoked heavy stone pelting from the miscreants and also from inside the campus of IUST. The Army personnel fired in air to chase the miscreants away
Police party rushed to the spot to control the situation. Army was immediately withdrawn from the area. Miscreants continued pelting stones on the Police Party headed by Senior Officers.
To control the severe and unprovoked pelting by the miscreants, the Police Party used few tear smoke shells to disperse the mob. Miscreants also set ablaze the cable rolls being laid by the Army.
In this regard, a case has been registered and investigation taken up. (CNS)