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Police Beat Protesting Paramedic Students in Indian-Controlled Kashmir

SRINAGAR, Kashmir -- Police in Indian-controlled Kashmir Wednesday used batons to disperse hundreds of paramedic students -- mostly females -- protesting the recent exam results, officials said.

The students staged a protest demonstration outside the health department's main office in Srinagar city, the summer capital of Indian-controlled Kashmir, demanding their answer scripts be re- evaluated.

The students alleged they have been deliberately shown failed in the examinations. Majority of the students who appeared in the examination have been shown unsuccessful in the results announced by the medical education department.

More than a dozen student received injuries in police action.

Police said the students had blocked the traffic in vicinity of civil secretariat housing the office of Chief Minister and top bureaucrats.

"We called in women constables to chase them away," said a police official posted in the city. "Their assembly was causing problems for the people."

A local journalist covering the protest was beaten and detained for two hours by the police.

"The police officer Imtiyaz Ismail Parray came from behind and then slapped me," said Azhar Qadri, principal correspondent for The Tribune. "I told him that I am journalist but his guards joined him and they dragged me up to their vehicle and finally took me to the police station."

Police in Indian-controlled Kashmir are trying to keep the media away from protest sites.

Meanwhile, journalist body Kashmir Journalists Corps (KJC) has condemned the assault on Qadri and called for an immediate probe into the incident and action against the police officer and his personal security officers.



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