SRINAGAR – Indian government forces martyred two Kashmir youth on Monday in an alleged gun battle, sparking protests by local civilians, police said.
Soldiers and special counterinsurgency police forces surrounded a neighbourhood in Khudwani, a village in the south of Indian-administered Kashmir.
Police fired tear gas to disperse hundreds of local residents who took to the streets in support of the slain youth and threw stones at government forces.
More than 140 Kashmiris have been killed so far this year in the restive valley, where India has deployed thousands of additional troops to hunt for Kashmiris having anti-India sentiments in an offensive dubbed "Operation Allout".
According to Kashmir Media Service, the martyred youth have been identified as Sayar Ahmad Wani and Dawood Illahi Khan.
The killings led to a spontaneous shutdown in the district. All shops and other commercial establishments are closed in Kulgam town and adjacent areas.
The authorities suspended mobile and internet services in Kulgam and Islamabad districts immediately after the killing of youth.