Srinagar: Indefinite curfew was clamped in all major towns of the Kashmir valley on Saturday in the wake of protests, even as the death toll in the violent clashes between locals and security forces rose to four.
There were also reports of sporadic protests in some parts of the valley.
Two of the 70 people injured during protests on Friday succumbed to injuries at a hospital on Saturday morning, a police spokesman said. The deceased have been identified as Mohammed Rafiq and 30-year old Mohammed Siddiqui of Baramulla district.
Official sources said curfew has been imposed as a precautionary measure following the protests.
Police and paramilitary forces were deployed in all sensitive areas and the residents have been asked not to step out.
Curfew passes given to media persons have been cancelled, police said. This is the second time this month that curfew passes have been cancelled. On 6 July, curfew passes were cancelled when the army was deployed in the city.
Security forces on Friday opened fire to quell stone-pelting protesters who clashed with them at several places.
The mob had also ransacked a police station in Pattan, besides a special operation group camp in the same area.
Shoukat Ahmad Chopan and Mohammad Ahsan Ganai were killed and seven others injured when security forces opened fire on a mob at Arampora village of Sopore, 55 kms from here in Baramulla district of north Kashmir.
People had taken to the streets shortly after Friday prayers and were heading towards Sopore town when the security forces intercepted them and asked them to disperse.
However, the protesters turned violent and indulged in stone-pelting on a CRPF picket. The security personnel opened fire, resulting in injuries to seven persons who were rushed to hospital. Chopan and Ganai succumbed to injuries at SMHS hospital here, they said.
Seven persons were also injured when police opened fire after a group of youths went on rampage and set ablaze a vehicle parked inside police station in Pattan, 27 kms from here on Srinagar-Baramulla national highway, police said.
The clashes come nearly 10 days after a person was killed and another injured in police firing in self-defence on a mob. which turned violent during funeral of youth, who had drowned in Jhelum river in Baramulla district.
Condemning the killings, Opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) had said on Friday that such incidents were contributing to an “unprecedented worsening of situation.”
PDP general secretary Mohammad Dilawar Mir in a statement accused the state administration of failing to perform its duty.
The state unit of CPM also expressed grief and shock over the killings.