Govt imposes curbs to foil protests
Normal life was disrupted in Kashmir on Thursday due to shutdown called by Joint Resistance Leadership (JRL) over killing of two militants and a civilian in a gunfight at Fateh Kadal in downtown Srinagar.
Authorities imposed stringent restrictions in downtown areas of Srinagar to prevent mass gathering of people and protests.
Large contingents of police and CRPF men were deployed at entry and exit points on many areas of downtown.
The forces placed barricades and concertina wires on roads to prevent public movement.
However, despite restrictions people managed to reach Fateh Kadal and Khanyar areas to offer their condolences with the families of two militants and a civilian, who were killed in gunfight in Fateh Kadal area yesterday.
"Due to restrictions mourners had to face tough experience to travel to Fateh Kadal to express condolences with the bereaved families. The mourners had to criss-cross though interiors to visit the families," said a local resident.
Officials said the restrictions were imposed as a precautionary measure to maintain law and order in view of strike called by JRL.
JRL comprising Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Muhammad Yasin Malik had called for strike to protest the killing of two militants and a civilian in a gunfight at Fateh Kadal yesterday.
Two militants--Mehraj-ud-Din Bangroo of Fatehladaial and Faid Mushtaq Waza of Khanyar--were killed in a gunfight with forces on Wednesday.
The civilian Rayees Habibullah Hanga, in whose house the gunfight took place, was also killed in the gunfight.
Police had claimed that he was accomplice of militants while family contradicted the police claim.
Meanwhile, all shops, commercial establishments and private offices and educational institutions were closed in Srinagar and other parts of the Valley while public transport was off the roads.
Authorities also suspended train services between Banihal and Baramulla.
Officials said the train service was suspended in view of security concerns.
Mobile internet service, which was suspended after encounter broke out yesterday, was restored but at low speed.
Meanwhile, scores of students of Kashmir University took out a protest march against the killing of a militant in a shootout with forces in south Kashmir’s Pulwama district.
The protesting students marched through the campus amidst chanting of anti-India and pro-freedom slogans.
The clashes broke out between youth and forces in the evening in downtown areas when forces were withdrawing.
The clashes took place at Zaldagar, Fateh Kadal, Habbakal and other parts of downtown.
The forces fired numerous tear smoke shells and resorted to heavy baton charge to quell stone pelting youth.
The clashes continue for sometime and subsided later.