A trail of destruction in Kashmir Valley

A trail of destruction in Kashmir Valley

A trail of destruction in Kashmir Valley
Life has been thrown out of gear in the Valley for the eighth consecutive day in the wake of clashes following the killing of Hizb commander Burhan Wani. Around 42 people were killed and close to 3,200, including 1,500 security personnel, have been injured so far.

Curfew and communication breakdown remained in force on Saturday. Locals are struggling to buy basic essentials, with children, old people and patients being the worst affected as baby food and medicines are running out of stock.

People stealthily drive or walk down the streets of Srinagar as they don’t know when they will be targeted by the frenzied mob or gun-toting security personnel.

Even ambulances carrying injured people are not spared. Around 60 ambulances have been destroyed over the past week.

Hospitals are filled with people awaiting treatment and wailing attendants. The intensity of violence in the area where this correspondent resides is comparatively lesser.  

First-person account
But, on Thursday, I had a narrow escape when my car was attacked by a mob while I was travelling from home to the city centre of Lal Chowk to file reports. The mob was determined to burn down my vehicle because, according to them, it is the Indian media that is spreading rumours about the Kashmir situation.  

While officially broadband internet connections are working, the service is so erratic that one has to wait for hours to send an email. Only a few VIP numbers and connections installed in newspaper offices are working without a glitch.

Mobile phone services remained suspended over fears of rumour-mongering. Numerous wedding functions were cancelled.

With a fresh bout of violence on Friday and separatists’ groups extending strike calls for three more days, there seems to be no end to the agitation in the Valley.