Paremedics lift an injured Kashmiri on to a bed on Saturday

AFP
Four days before the second phase of polling, terror revisited Kashmir when militants hurled a powerful grenade in the heart of city at Lal Chowk injuring eight people including a father-son duo and a paramilitary officer on Saturday. The police said that a militant lobbed a grenade near Palladium Cinema on Saturday afternoon injuring eight people. The injured include sub inspector of 132 battalion CRPF identified as Hari Ram Devakar. According to the police, all the injured were immediately shifted to the hospital for treatment. “An unknown militant hurled a grenade near Palladium cinema in which seven civilians and one CRPF sub inspector was injured. The CRPF officer was discharged as he sustained minor injuries”, said Kishore Prasad, a CRPF spokesman at Srinagar. Prasad said that the grenade fell 10 to 15 metres away from the CRPF mobile bunker which is positioned at the same place. “The main impact was on one of the auto rickshaws in which a lady and a child were travelling. They got injured”, he said. The attack was carried out at a time when the area was bustling with activities. People ran helter skelter for safety after the blast. Order was restored soon and the injured were shifted to a hospital for treatment. The police and CRPF immediately cordoned off the area to hunt down the militant. “There is a search operation going on. The police and CRPF are searching the area”, he said. Police sources, however, said that the militant responsible for the incident had fled the area after lobbing the grenade. Following the incident, security forces were on high alert to keep anti-national elements at bay and ensure free and fair polling. Srinagar is going to polls in the fourth phase on December 14. Saturday’s attack comes just four days before the second phase of polling in Jammu and Kashmir. Eighteen constituencies of Jammu and Kashmir are going to polls on Tuesday. “Security has been strengthened. We are keeping a check in all the sensitive areas. All the areas have been put on alert. Special checking is being done at different places, Random checking and frisking is also going on”, said Prasad. Main opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has strongly condemned the grenade attack calling it “inhuman and unfortunate” “People behind this crime are frustrated and seem hell bent upon to sabotage the ongoing poll process in the state by creating fear among the people,” said Mehbooba Mufti, PDP president. She said the perpetrators were not only shedding the blood of innocents but were adding to the pain and sufferings of the people. “Police should thoroughly investigate the incident and identify the perpetrators immediately”, she said.

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Militant lobs grenade in Srinagar, injures 8