Soon after the encounter ended at Harkhipora village, the district hospital Pulwama had started receiving injured civilians. The doctors and paramedic staff at the hospital had braced itself to cater to the injured.
“Having experience of the kind of injuries we receive here normally, whenever situation worsens here, we even need help of our students sometimes,” said Medical Superintendent Dr Abdul Rashid at the Pulwama hospital.
Dr Rashid said in the morning when doctors and paramedic staff including our students were busy nursing injured at the hospital. “We heard some gunshots,” said Dr Rashid.
Suddenly, Dr Rashid said, there was panic in the hospital. “Our nurse Gulzar and paramedic student was injured. They were hit by stray bullets.”
Fortunately, Dr Rashid said, it was deflected bullets. “They had received splinters of deflected bullets,” he said.
At the time when both were hit by the deflected bullet splinters, Dr Rashid said, they were inside operation theatre. “It was a bit scary. But the magnitude with which we were receiving injuries, we could not have stopped. But we continued.”
The moment we started operating on both of them, Dr Rashid said, two more injured-one with bullet in foot and leg arrived.“It for a moment seemed that war going on.”
Dr Rashid said he was not knowing what was going on outside. “I was inside operation theatre. I could only tell you that on one hand my sister who was injured just now inside the theatre was injured. On the other hand injured were pouring in.”
More than a three dozen people were injured in the protests that erupted after the Harkhipora encounter, in which Lashker-e-Toiba chief Abu Dujana and his associate Arif Ahmad Dar was killed. Pulwama hospital received over a dozen injuries and some were referred to Srinagar hospital.
According to the Medical Superintendent SMHS hospital, Dr Nazir Ahmad Chowdhary hospital received 17 injured from Pulwama. “Nine had bullet injuries. Four were hit by pellets in eyes while other had extra ocular pellet injuries,” said Dr Chowdhary.
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