Strike, Restrictions Continue In Kashmir
By Sheikh Imran Bashir
28 July, 2010
Agence India Press
Srinagar: Restrictions were on Wednesday imposed on the movement of people in parts of Srinagar and Budgam districts in the wake of demonstrations planned by separatists across the Kashmir Valley.
After a normal day, Kashmir valley once again observed a complete shutdown on Wednesday in response to the call given by the Hurriyat Conference (G) spearheading the ongoing “Quit Kashmir Movement.”
Normalcy had returned to the Valley yesterday as the Hurriyat conference led by Syed Ali Shah Geelani allowed a break in their week-long shutdown programme in view of the Muslim festival of Shab-e-Baraat.
According to Agence India Press city reporter, hundreds of policemen and paramilitary CRPF troopers were deployed in the volatile old city to prevent people from coming out and staging demonstrations.
Despite tougher security restrictions in the city, people staged a protest rally whereas police beefed up the security in most parts of the old city including Safakadal, Khanqah, Nowhatta, Saidakadal, Rainawari Fateh Kadal, Saraf Kadal, Bohri Kadal, Nawab Bazar, Lal Bazar, Maharajgunj and Gojwara.
Shouting anti-India slogans, Kashmiri youth staged a violent protest in Natipora. The youths protested by burning wooden logs and tyres in the area and hundreds of people came out on the streets, shouting anti-India and pro-freedom slogans.
Life also remained paralyzed in various district headquarters including Baramulla, Kupwara, Bandipora, Islamabad, Kulgam, Shopian and Pulwama.
Meanwhile, scores of people of Palhalan took to streets this morning and staged pro-freedom demonstration. Shouting slogans, the protesters tried to take out a rally to Pattan. However, CRPF troops and police intercepted their procession near the shrine of Baba Teng. The protesters later dispersed peacefully.
Prof. Bhim Singh, Chairman, JKNPP along with Panthers Party senior office bearers, district presidents from Kashmir Valley was arrested at Lal Chowk where the Panthers Party had declared to organize a political conclave as a part of initiating a political process in Jammu and Kashmir in support of ongoing movement for the dismissal of NC-Congress government and imposition of Governor Rule.
In rest of the Valley, life remained crippled due to the Hurriyat’s sponsored shutdown. Shops and educational institutions were closed and transport was off the roads.
Normal life has been hit in the Valley for the past five weeks as the separatists called for strikes to protest the killing of several youths in alleged firing by security forces.
However State government has ordered a judicial probe into the deaths of 17 civilians in the recent past during police and paramilitary Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) action on protesters, a government spokesman said Wednesday.
"The Cabinet which met Tuesday evening under the Chairmanship of Chief Minister, Omar Abdullah approved the constitution of Commission of Inquiry into all the 17 incidents in which fatalities had occurred on account of action by the State Police and CRPF since June 11, 2010," the spokesman said.
Two retired judges of the region's high court will carry out the inquiry and submit the report to the local government within three months.
Protests erupted in the region on June 11 after a 17-year old student Tufail Ahmad Matoo died after being hit by a teargas shell fired by police. The killing was followed by 16 more mostly of teenagers over a month in similar actions.
The unrest has mounted pressure on the local government headed by Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, which reacted by clamping a curfew and strict restrictions to put an end to the violence.
The J&K government has also decided to review the cases of detention under the Public Safety Act (PSA) and make recommendations about the release of detainees, the spokesman said. The PSA is a preventive detention law under which a person can be taken into custody for two years without trial.
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