The death toll in the communal clashes in Jammu and Kashmir’s Kishtwar has risen to three with another body being recovered in the district Monday, officials said.
The body was found in Paddar village.
Locals and relatives alleged that the slain person had taken refuge in the local police station after the clashes, which began Friday, spread to Paddar the next day but members of the local village defence committee (VDC) stormed it, dragged him out and killed him.
VDCs were formed in the far-flung areas of Jammu region to combat militants and their members were provided weapons by the state police.
Kashmiri separatist leaders have been blaming the VDCs for communal clashes in Kishtwar, alleging that weapons provided to them were used during these clashes.
Meanwhile, police carried out a baton charge and used tear gas to disperse a group of women protesters trying to defy curfew in Kishwar town Monday.
“Police intercepted the protestors and dispersed them using batons and tear smoke shells. Curfew is being strictly enforced,” an officer said.
Some people have been arrested in connection with the clashes.
Three people have died in clashes in the Jammu region, Finance Minister P. Chidambaram Monday said adding that the government will not allow any forced migration from the area.
The minister told the Rajya Sabha that the situation in the violence-hit Jammu region has been brought under control, and three lives have been lost.
“So far, two Muslims and one Hindu have died in the clashes. All of us are Indians. Three Indian lives have been lost and that is a matter of great regret,” Chidambaram said.
“We will not allow repetition of 1990. We will not allow forced migration, we will not allow forced resettlement, everybody will be protected in the area in which he or she lives,” Chidambaram said.
The exodus of Kashmiri pandits from the Valley started in 1990 soon after the outbreak of the insurgency in the state.
Chidambaram’s comments came as several members, including Leader of Opposition Arun Jaitley of the Bharatiya Janata Party expressed fears that the violence that erupted in Jammu may lead to a similar situation as in the Valley in 1990.
The finance minister was speaking after a discussion on last week’s riots in Kishtwar town. He made the statement as Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde was unwell.