Kashmir Indepth

Evening Clashes: Tear gas, pepper grenade smoke give sleepless nights to Kashmir’s ill, elderly; babies


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Srinagar 06 Sep : As the spontaneous shutdown in Kashmir enters into the second month, various crowd control measures used by the Security Forces to quell the protestors in Srinagar areas especially in volatile downtown has resulted in a major irritating tool for the elderly and sick patients having heart and chest ailments.

According to news agency , security forces use pepper gas, tear gas and stun grenades to deal with the protestors, but the thick smoke cover that fills the air, especially in evening hours, results in a massive trouble for the elderly and sick patients. Many witnesses said that new born and kinds too development irritation due to the unabated use of tear gas and pepper shells.

As most of the victims of these hazardous gases complain about the serious respiratory disorder, nausea, headaches, skin irritation, etc. As per the journal on respiratory complications, the Medical Council of India has pointed out in their reports that, “The excessive inhalation of the pepper and tear gases can cause complications of breathing on babies and old age patients and in some cases exposure to those gases can cause death of the victim.”

Nazir Ahmad, a patient suffering from COPD told ,”I face a lot of complications whenever these gases are used against the protestors in our locality as the inhale of these gases suffocates me and at the same time I feel a strong chest pain.”

He told that he was exposed to those gases several times and from that experience he suffered a lot. It usually took three to four hours for me to recover from the effect of these harmful gases.

Dr. Khalid a Pulmonologist told ,” The effect of the pepper and tear gas poses a great life threat to the elderly patients and kids as well. Whereas most of our patients complains about their respiratory complications whenever they get exposed to such gases.”

He told that exposure to such gases worsens the respiratory system of the patients who suffers from various chronic disorders like COPD Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Diseases.

He further told that, “The excessive use of the pepper and tear gas canisters must be shunned by the forces in order to ease the complications of the old age patients who are suffering from chronic disorders.”

Another Doctor wishing anonymity from the CD Hospital told ,” I understand that the use of the pepper and tear gas canisters are of great use while dealing with the mobs or crowd control operation but at the same this can prove fatal for the babies and the old age patients.”

He told that the use of these gases are strictly restricted in many countries on the basis of medical complications resulted from the exposure of these harmful gases.

(Inputs from KNO)

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