Auto driver injured in stone pelting dies

Auto driver injured in stone pelting dies

A 23-year-old auto driver, who was critically injured after being attacked by stonepelters last week in south Kashmir’s Anantnag district died at a hospital here on Monday night.

Police said Riyaz Ahmad Khanday of Aangmattipora, Anantnag who was critically injured on March 8 in an attack by a mob throwing stones on vehicles, died at Sher-e-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences.

Police have registered a case of murder and arrested four people, including a student, in the connection.

A police spokesperson said Riyaz — who was ferrying labourers in his load carrier — was hit by a stone. “Three more persons known to Riyaz were also traveling with them. Stone pelting caused severe head injury to him and he died on March 11 at 7.30 PM,” he said.

Riyaz who is survived by his parents, a brother and two sisters, according to police, was intercepted by the stonepelters and was asked the reason for his “defiance of the shutdown call.”  Sources said that he had questioned the repeated strike calls by separatists after which the mob hit him with a stone.

Police have arrested four suspects — Mohammad Iqbal Najar, 24, Aamir Hussain Najar, 18, Aamir Bashir Malik, a BEd student and Sartaj Ahmad Wagay, a shopkeeper. They have been remanded to police custody for seven days.

Reports said that as soon as Riyaz’s body reached his hometown, the residents protested against the stonepelters and demanded action against the culprits.