Srinagar, October 16: Thirty years old, Afroza Begum, was in the kitchen of her around five kilometers from Sopore town in north Kashmir when some braid choppers barged into her house and cut her hair.

“I was in the kitchen when someone held my hair from behind and I lost consciousness. After gaining back consciousness, I found people surround me and my hair had been cut,” Begum said. She was shifted to sub-district hospital Sopore for treatment, and doctors found no affliction of psychological disturbance.

“A strand of Begum’s hair was found chopped,” said block medical officer (BMO) Sopore, Dr Sami. The victim remained under observation for an hour, before doctors discharged her. “The victim was alright when she was at hospital. She reported at 1: 30 pm and was discharged at 2: 30 pm. We observed her for an hour and nothing adverse was established,” Dr Sami said adding that “she was mentally stable.” “There was no case of psychological disturbance,’’ he added.

Mehfooza (name changed), 14, was at home in Qamarwari, in Srinagar when she was struck by the braid cutters. According to family Mehfooza was busy preparing to appear in upcoming 8-th standard exams when her hair was cut. “We don’t know how this happened. She was studying inside the house when at around 11 am her hair was chopped and she was left in an unconscious state,” said victim’s father Manzoor Ahmad.

Victim’s parents were not at home when the incident took place, which triggered strong outrage in the area. “We had gone to a relative’s house for the purpose of mourning. Though victim’s grandmother was at home, she is ailing and has no clue about the incident,” said Ahmad.

At Ahmad’s concrete house, people—men and women gathered in large numbers and were inquiring about the incident-while some shopkeepers had downed shutters and the youth also protested after the incident.

“My daughter says she didn’t see anything or any person while her hair was cut,” said Ahmad. “But, we found her white Hijab (head gear) was sprayed with some red chilly substance,” he father said.

Meanwhile, police have said that people were complaining that Indian forces were involved in braid chopping incidents in the Valley only to create unrest.

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