Srinagar, July 12: Thousands of people, today, participated in multi-rounds of funeral prayers of youth, killed by Indian troops during a siege and search operation in Badgam district.

The youth identified as Aaqib Gul, Javaid Ahmad Shiekh and Sajjad Ahmad Gilkar were killed in a night-long gun-fight in Radbugh village of Badgam district, last night. Aaqib and Sajjad belonged to Srinagar while Tafazul Islam alias Javid Sheikh hailed from Beerwah area of Badgam district. The killings triggered spontaneous shutdown in Srinagar and Badgam areas. Clashes erupted between youth and Indian forces’ personnel on the Airport road in Srinagar. Youth hurled rocks on the police and paramilitary personnel. The troops fired teargas shells on the protesting youth.

The mourners carried body of Aaqib to Hyderpora amid massive pro-freedom slogans. They were proceeding towards the residence of APHC Chairman, Syed Ali Geelani. Photojournalists covering the funeral said that the mourners wanted Syed Ali Geelani to lead the funeral prayers of Aaqib, but forces’ personnel already deployed there in strength did not let them proceed and the funeral prayers were finally offered at Hyderpora Chowk. Aaqib Gul was laid to rest amid pro-freedom and anti-India slogans at his ancestral graveyard at Hyderpora in Srinagar. Women wailed and beat their chests as the body of Aaqib Gul reached his home this morning.

At least four rounds of funeral prayers were held for Tafazul Islam alias Javid Sheikh at his ancestral Narbal area in Budgam district. Tens of thousands of people participated in his funeral prayers in which banners extolling Burhan Wani were hoisted by the mourners.

Meanwhile, complete shutdown was observed in Srinagar and Badgam areas against the killings. The authorities imposed curfew-like restrictions particularly in Rainawari, Khanyar, Nowhatta, Maharaj Gung and Safa Kadal areas of Srinagar. Shutdown was also observed in Magam, Aripanthan, Narbal and Beerwah areas of Badgam. Internet services were suspended in the two districts.

The body of the third martyr, Sajjad Ahmad Gilkar, has not yet been handed over to his family by the authorities fearing widespread protests in the territory.

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