Bandipora, May 08 (By Owais Farooqi): Army soldiers on Monday night allegedly hit a teenage boy on his head so severely that he had to undergo a head surgery at Srinagar’s SMHS Hospital. The boy was picked up by army soldiers at the main chowk of Saderkote Bala village in Bandipora district and later dropped near a police post in a critically injured condition, eyewitnesses said.
The injured boy, Javaid Ahmad Khan, 15, is a resident of Saderkote Bala village and a Class 10 student at the government higher secondary school in Safapora. His brother, Manzoor Ahmad Khan, told Kashmir Reader over phone from SMHS Hospital, where he is attending to his brother, that an army cavalcade was passing through Saderkote main chowk on Monday night when it was pelted with stones by some youths. The incident escalated into clashes between stone-throwing youths and army soldiers, during which the solders caught hold of Javaid and took him away.
“He was picked up by army men and later beaten on the head with gun-butts. The soldiers belonged to the 13 RR (Rashtriya Rifles) that is camped at Saderkote Bala,” Manzoor said. “It is nothing but the barbarity of the army.”
Locals who had held a protest on Monday night by blocking the Bandipora-Srinagar road near Saderkote main chowk said that Javaid was dropped near the area’s police post in a critical condition, from where police and his family took him to Srinagar. One person who claimed to have witnessed the boy being beaten said that “army soldiers repeatedly hit him on his head with gun butts.”
Family members of the boy said that doctors at SMHS Hospital performed a “head surgery” on him.
The army’s Srinagar-based PRO Colonel Rajesh Kalia told Kashmir Reader, “We are verifying the details of the incident and the allegations.”