Strike, lockdown as Kashmir mourns civilian killings

Geelani, Mirwaiz, Malik caged; Lawyers stayed away from courts

Abid Bashir
Srinagar, Publish Date: Jul 12 2018 12:07AM | Updated Date: Jul 12 2018 1:31AM
Strike, lockdown as Kashmir mourns civilian killingsPhoto: Mubashir Khan/GK

Authorities imposed a lockdown in large parts of Kashmir Wednesday as the valley observed a near-complete shutdown in response to a strike call given by the Joint Resistance Leadership.  

Schools, colleges, universities and business establishments remained shut for the day and traffic was thin on the roads across all districts in the valley. Train services also remained suspended. 

The JRL comprising Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Muhammad Yasin malik had called for a strike against continuing civilian killings at the hands of government forces during protests near the sites of frequent gun battles with militants. 

Lawyers associated with Kashmir High Court Bar Association also protested by staying away from various courts including the High Court. 

“All the lawyers stayed away from their routine work today, as a mark of protest against the civilian killings,” said advocate G N Shaheen, general secretary of the KHCBA.

Since Sunday four youth, including a 12-year-old girl were killed in government forces’ firing during anti-militancy operations in southern districts of Kulgam and Shopian. 

The killings evoked sharp criticism from the pro-freedom leadership who accused the forces of committing a “planned genocide of Kashmir’s young generation.”

According to official figures, 106 civilians have been killed in firing by government forces around sites of firefights with militants in the last 18 months. The dead included minor boys and girls. 

The main city center of Lal Chowk wore a deserted look as all commercial establishments and private institutions remained closed. 

Authorities imposed stringent curbs in most areas of downtown Srinagar including Maharaj Gunj, Safa Kadal, Rainawari, Nowhatta and Khanyar. 

A witness said heavy deployment of government forces, mainly the paramilitary CRPF, wearing riot gear were deployed along arterial roads and bylanes to dissuade street protests. 

“Police and paramilitary CRPF men had also closed all major roads in downtown with rolls of concertina wire to prevent youth from assembling in large numbers,” said Reyaz Ahmed, a resident of Khanyar.

Residents and witnesses said police and paramilitary CRPF men were seen patrolling since early morning on all major road links in southern towns of Pulwama, Shopian, Awantipore, Bijbehera, Tral, Kulgam, Khudwani, Redwani, and Pampore.  

In Shopian district, mobile internet services remained suspended for the fourth straight day, a resident said.

“Bikers and the suspicious were being stopped and asked to show their identity cards by the police and CRPF men at various places in southern Kashmir,” a witness said. 

Tempers in south Kashmir districts, especially Kulgam and Shopian are running high in the wake of four civilian killings by soldiers since Sunday.

Authorities also placed all the separatist leaders either under house detention or in preventive custody in various jails across Kashmir. 

Top JRL leader, Syed Ali Geelani continued to be confined to his home like has been since eight years. 

Miwaiz Umar Farooq who was set free for a day on Wednesday was once again placed under house confinement, while JKLF chief Muhammad Yasin Malik who was detained on July 6, ahead of the slain Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani’s second anniversary, continued to remain lodged in police station Kothibagh. 

Rest of the middle-rung separatist leaders that include Muhammad Ashraf Sehrai, Ghulam Nabi Sumji, Muhammad Ashraf Laya and many others were also either under house detention or in preventive custody in various police stations, a source in the resistance camp said.

“The day passed off peacefully,” a police officer said, adding the crackdown on separatist leaders will continue in the wake of their strike call for July 13 and proposed march to the Martyrs’ Graveyard at Naqshband Saheb. 

However, towards the evening intense clashes broke out in Soura area of Srinagar between irate youth and government forces. 

Government forces fired tear smoke canisters to disperse the angry protestors leading to clashes and stone pelting.

A witness said at least five carts of fruit vendors caught fire after a few tear gas shells landed on fruit boxes atop them.

“There were clashes going on in the area. The forces fired dozens of tear gas shells some of which landed directly on the carts of fruit vendors,” a witness said.

“Within no time, some carts caught fire.”

A police official admitted few carts caught fire during the clashes. 

“It seems a tear gas shell landed at the grass where fruit is stored beneath the carts. That’s what triggered the fire. In between, some protestors pushed few more carts towards the one that had already caught fire,” he said. 

Clashes were on in the area till late evening.

Latest News

  1. JRL calls shutdown on November 22 against killing of Tehreek-e-Hurriyat leader
  2. JRL calls shutdown on November 22 against killing of Tehreek-e-Hurriyat leader
  1. Cop, who allegedly attempted suicide at DGP office, succumbs to injuries
  2. Cop, who allegedly attempted suicide at DGP office, succumbs to injuries
  1. DSEK invites applications from under privileged students to avail 10 percent quota in coaching centres
  2. DSEK invites applications from under privileged students to avail 10 percent quota in coaching centres
  1. Delhi CM attacked with chilli powder in secretariat: Officials
  2. Delhi CM attacked with chilli powder in secretariat: Officials
  1. Tehreek-e-Hurriyat leader’s killing part of conspiracy to suppress genuine Kashmir voices: Jama’at
  2. Tehreek-e-Hurriyat leader’s killing part of conspiracy to suppress genuine Kashmir voices: Jama’at
  1. Two army soldiers wounded in cross-LoC fire in Pir Panjal
  2. Two army soldiers wounded in cross-LoC fire in Pir Panjal
  1. Deeply saddened by killing of Tehreek-e-Hurriyat leader in south Kashmir, says Mirwaiz
  2. Deeply saddened by killing of Tehreek-e-Hurriyat leader in south Kashmir, says Mirwaiz
  1. Panchayat polls: 57 per cent voter turnout recorded in Bandipora till noon
  2. Panchayat polls: 57 per cent voter turnout recorded in Bandipora till noon
  1. Judge halts Trump's asylum ban
  2. Judge halts Trump's asylum ban
  1. Would be good for Musharraf to return to Pak to face trial: Court
  2. Would be good for Musharraf to return to Pak to face trial: Court
  1. SC adjourns CBI hearing post 'leak' of Verma's response
  2. SC adjourns CBI hearing post 'leak' of Verma's response
  1. Vaishno Devi pilgrim from Maharashtra dies in Katra
  2. Vaishno Devi pilgrim from Maharashtra dies in Katra
  1. Salahuddin condemns killing of Tehreek-e-Hurriyat leader, calls it ‘handiwork of Indian agencies’
  2. Salahuddin condemns killing of Tehreek-e-Hurriyat leader, calls it ‘handiwork of Indian agencies’
  1. Militants killed in Shopian gunfight identified
  2. Militants killed in Shopian gunfight identified
  1. Panchayat polls: Less than one per cent polling recorded in Anantnag till 10 AM
  2. Panchayat polls: Less than one per cent polling recorded in Anantnag till 10 AM
  1. Pakistan, IMF facing differences over bailout programme
  2. Pakistan, IMF facing differences over bailout programme
  1. Tehreek-e-Hurriyat district president Anantnag Hafizullah Mir shot dead
  2. Tehreek-e-Hurriyat district president Anantnag Hafizullah Mir shot dead
  1. Four militants, army commando killed in Shopian gunfight; Internet suspended
  2. Four militants, army commando killed in Shopian gunfight; Internet suspended
  1. Amritsar attack: Punjab Police detain 'hardliners' for questioning
  2. Amritsar attack: Punjab Police detain 'hardliners' for questioning
  1. Militant killings trigger violent protests in Shopian, Pulwama towns
  2. Militant killings trigger violent protests in Shopian, Pulwama towns
  1. Six killed, 10 injured in explosion near ordnance depot in Maharashtra
  2. Six killed, 10 injured in explosion near ordnance depot in Maharashtra
  1. Three girls among four civilians injured in Shopian clashes, referred to Srinagar
  2. Three girls among four civilians injured in Shopian clashes, referred to Srinagar
  1. 2nd phase of Panchayat polls begins in Jammu and Kashmir
  2. 2nd phase of Panchayat polls begins in Jammu and Kashmir
  1. Abducted Shopian youth shot in leg, set free
  2. Abducted Shopian youth shot in leg, set free
  1. Jammu and Kashmir border clash: Mortar shells land near Poonch brigade headquarters
  2. Jammu and Kashmir border clash: Mortar shells land near Poonch brigade headquarters
  1. Multiple people reported shot near hospital in Chicago
  2. Multiple people reported shot near hospital in Chicago
  1. Three army soldiers wounded as gunfight breaks out in south Kashmir's Shopian
  2. Three army soldiers wounded as gunfight breaks out in south Kashmir's Shopian
x
This site uses cookies to deliver our services and to show you relevant news and ads. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Service.That's Fine