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At least 150 civilians injured by pellets, bullets

By Zishan Amiri
Srinagar, Apr 01: Kashmir on Sunday witnessed a recap of the 2016 unrest with over 150 civilian injuries due to the bullets, pellets and shells fired by the government forces in several post encounter clashes that took place in multiple south Kashmir districts.
The news of militant and civilian deaths broke out after the three separate encounters that took place between the militants and forces in south Kashmir’s Shopian district on Sunday.
As per local sources, over 150 civilians have suffered injuries, a majority of them because of pellets. 60 of the injured were referred to several hospitals in Srinagar.
“He is a piece of my heart. Please, save him oh God, please!” wailed a middle-aged man, standing outside the gate of SMHS Hospital’s Emergency Operations ward.
39 civilians were brought to SMHS of which 36 had sustained pellet injuries and three were hit by bullets.
“Of the 36 pellet-hit victims, at least 24 have suffered eye injuries,” a doctor said, adding: “Two civilians were hit by bullets in their limbs, while one was hit in the abdomen.”
A total of ten civilians were referred to SKIMS Soura during the day, and as per Dr Farooq Jan, Medical Superintendent, “all had bullet injuries”.
10 injured civilians were referred to Bone and Joints Hospital, Barzulla, of which, six were hit by bullets and four were hit by pellets.
“All the patients are out of danger. We have treated six upper limb and four lower limb injuries,” Dr Ghulam Nabi told The Kashmir Monitor.
In district hospital Shopian, at least 100 injured people were brought during the day. A doctor there told The Kashmir Monitor that forces fired shells inside the hospital.
Here at SMHS, the forces personnel who were kept to examine the movements outside the Hospital’s entrance gate just ended up becoming mere spectators.
All the beds at the Ophthalmology ward were occupied by patients and their relatives.
Outside the emergency theatre, relatives of all age groups were seen eagerly awaiting any update from the doctors.
“Amir?” called one of the doctors, “Relatives of Amir, please come forward.”
When no relative came forward after continuous calling, a group of 5 youth sitting at one corner, made their way towards Amir and took him to the ward no. 8, as directed by the doctor.
On inquiring about Amir’s family, a local said, “His family must not be aware of his whereabouts. Who knows? There are many who have been just randomly brought here by the locals.”
“We will always stand united. They can kill us, but not our hopes.”
Inside the hospital, several locals were seen distributing food and helping the injured and those who accompanies them.
At one corner, a mentally-ill lady in her 50s was also seen continuously wailing the injuries and deaths; cursing India, the media and the forces.