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Poll-bound areas shut, clashes in some areas

Srinagar: Youth throw stones on security personnel during clashes between forces and protesters,who were protesting against the 4th Pahse of Municipal elections,near a Polling Station in Srinagar on Tuesday, Oct 16, 2018. PTI Photo by Umar Ganie

Srinagar, Oct 16: Life was disrupted in parts of Kashmir due to shut down call forwarded by Joint Resistance Leadership in poll bound area. Due to strict restrictions in parts of old Srinagar city, the normal business got affected as government had deployed government forces personnel in large numbers on roads.
For the last phase voting was held in New-Theed, Harwan, Nishat, Brane, Dalgate,Pantha chowk, Palapora, Tarabal, Kawadara, Hawal, Alamgari-Bazar Gilli-Kadal, Nowshara, Lal-Bazar, Botshah-Mohalla, Umer-Colony, Jogi-Lankar, Kathi-Darwaza, Lokut-Dal, Bud-Dal, Hazratbal, Tailbal, Habbak, Chatterhama, Zakura Soura, Buchpora, Ahmad-Nagar, Pattan, Ganderbal, Pampore, Khrew, Pulwama, Shopian, and Dooru Verinag.
Reports said that a complete shutdown was observed in poll bound areas where schools and business establishments remained shut. In Soura area in the outskirts of Srinagar city, massive clashes erupted between protesters and government forces personnel. Protesters pelted stones on Forces who retaliated with tear-smoke shells.
Three candidates were in the fray from Soura, about 10 kilometres from the city centre Lal Chowk.
The heavily fortified polling station there opened at 6 am and was open for voting till 4 pm.
But the booths remained empty through the 10 hours with youths hurling stones at forces. This was being seen as an attempt to intimidate prospective votes from casting their ballot, officials said.
There were pitched battles between security forces and protestors in the municipal ward with teargas smoke leaving traces in the air. The protestors began picketing the area even before police was deployed. Stones and other hurdles were placed to block the roads.
Government forces also burst tear smoke shells to break up a pro-freedom protest by the students of Islamic University of Science and Technology (IUST) in South Kashmir’s Pulwama district.
The students were protesting against the killing of scholar turned Hizb militant Manan Wani who along with his associate Ashiq Hussain Zargar of Tulwari Langate were killed in Shatgund Bala area of Handwara town.
Reports said that agitated students pelted rocks at the government forces, who responded by lobbing tear gas canisters which led to the outbreak of fierce clashes. Students resent Forces action of not allowing them to organize a march in favour of Manan Wani.
Clashes were also reported from Lal Bazar area of Srinagar city. Authorities had reduced internet speed to 2G, thus chocking the free flow of information.