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PSAs, JeI ban: Kashmir shuts, Friday prayers not allowed in Jamia

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Srinagar, Mar 8: Life across Kashmir was affected on Friday due to a protest shutdown called by Joint Hurriyat leadership against the detention of Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) chairman Yasin Malik and also the arrests of Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) cadres. Authorities also imposed restrictions in Maisuma, Rainawari, Khanyar, M.R. Gunj and Safa Kadal areas of Srinagar.
Mirwaiz Umar Farooq was placed under house arrest at his residence. Syed Ali Geelani continues to remain under house arrest in Hyderpora locality of Srinagar.
Shops, public transport and other businesses remained shut across the valley.
Heavy contingents of state police and the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) were deployed in sensitive areas.
Malik was detained under the Public Safety Act (PSA) on Thursday and was shifted to the Kot Bhalwal Jail in Jammu district. Anybody detained under the PSA can be held for a maximum of two years without any judicial intervention.
Some of the recently detained senior JeI leaders have also been booked under the PSA and were shifted to jails outside the valley.
Meanwhile, for the consecutive second week, the authorities didn’t allow Friday congregational prayers at historic Jamia Masjid Srinagar.
Reports said that the heavy deployment was made since morning in the Nowhatta area to ensure strict restrictions. Police sources said that deployment was made to “maintain law and order”.
Chief cleric Mirwaiz Umar Farooq took to social networking site Twitter wrote: “For the 2nd consecutive week mandatory Friday Prayers barred at #JamaMasjid Srinagar by the ruling regime. Restrictions Imposed in #ShareKhaas, People caged in homes, leadership either under #HouseArrest or jailed under PSA.”

Ailing Malik placed in solitary confinement: JKLF

Srinagar, Mar 8: A day after JKLF Chairman Yasin Malik was slapped with PSA and shifted to Kot Bhalwal jail in Jammu, its workers and leaders carried out a protest near Budshah Chowk on Friday.
The speakers in the protests, as per a JKLF spokesperson, said that the manner in Malik was “manhandled by the police at the orders of civil administration, blocked to see his mother and sisters, deprived of a compulsory medical checkup and rushed to Kot-Bhalwal jail Jammu is shameful and condemnable.”
The spokesperson said that Malik has been put into solitary confinement in the jail even though authorities know he is a known heart patient and suffers from many other ailments.
“He has been locked inside a barrack and singled out from all other inmates. This revengeful act is a deliberate attempt to damage his health and we caution the so-called rulers to refrain from all such undemocratic and unethical acts,” the spokesperson said.

 
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Principal’s ‘custodial killing’: Probe officer meets family, locals

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Srinagar, Mar 23: Assistant Commissioner Revenue (ACR) Pulwama Qazi Masood probing the “custodial killing” of a school principal Saturday met the victim’s family in Awantipora area of Pulwama district.
Rizwan Asad Pandit, the Principal of Sabir Abdullah Public School Tral, was picked up by the police from his home late on March 17 during a raid and was killed in police custody at the Cargo Building two days later, according to his family.
Although the police had initially admitted that Rizwan had “died” in custody and that the matter was being probed under “procedure laid down in Section 176 of CRPC,” it later filed an FIR against him for “escape or attempts to escape from custody”, lending a new twist to the case.
The magisterial inquiry that was ordered in Srinagar was also closed and a fresh probe ordered in Pulwama district and a report sought in “four weeks.”
“Government has appointed me as an inquiry officer, I assured the family that I will conduct the fair investigation into the case,” the inquiry officer Qazi Masood told GNS after meeting Rizwan’s family members and local residents.
Masood said he has sought a report from SP Awantipora on why and how Rizwan was detained and the circumstances that led to his death.
“I have also sought a postmortem report from the SP,” the officer said.
Meanwhile, reports said that soon after the inquiry officer arrived in the area and met the family members, locals held a protest demonstration demanding stern action against the guilty.

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Civil society, traders, Bar demand special inquiry commission

Syed Nashir Ali Gillani

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Srinagar, Mar 23: Kashmir business community, civil society, and High Court Bar Association on Saturday asked Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Paul Malik to set-up an independent Special Commission of inquiry in the custodial killing of Awantipora school teacher Rizwan Asad Pandit.
Addressing a press conference in Srinagar, they said that there have been countless instances of inquiries being ordered in killings without any results.
“To deter future violations, we appeal to the Governor for setting up of a time-bound Independent Special Commission of Inquiry,” they said.
The members said that till the time the commission submits its report, it would serve justice if the case is treated to be one of custodial killing and all persons associated with it are put behind bars and kept away from active duty.
“Such inquiries, suffering from institutional bias and state interference, have rarely served the interests of justice,” they said.
“We have a reason to believe that this killing would also suffer the same fate and the killers would again roam free to kill, more confident in the fact that their crimes will never be brought to account,” they said.
They said that the repeated perpetration of serious violations of human rights and humanitarian law needs in-depth fact-finding and investigation.
On Tuesday, Rizwan Asad Pandit, a 29-year-old school teacher, died inside the Jammu and Kashmir’s CARGO camp in Srinagar.
He was picked up for questioning from his home in Awantipora on Sunday.
The family had said that his body bore evidence of being subjected to extreme physical violence.
The press conference was jointly held by KCC&I, High Court Bar Association, KTMF, KEA, KTMF (R), FCIK(A), FCIK(M), JKSECC, KCSDS, KHARA, CCIK, All Transport Welfare Association, Kashmir Valley Fruit Growers Dealers Association, Houseboat Owners Association, KHAROF, Pvt School Association, Kashmir Bakers Association, All Kashmir Chemist & Distributors Association, Hoteliers Club, All Traders & Transporters Coordination Committee, All J&K Taxi Owners Association, Association Of Kashmir Tour, Environmental Protection Group, Shehr E Khaas Coordination, Beopar Mandal S R Gunj, Rehabilitation Alliance, and Batamaloo Traders Association.

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ED imposes Rs 14.4 lakh penalty on Geelani

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Srinagar, Mar 22: The Enforcement Directorate (ED) Friday imposed Rs 14.4 lakh penalty, on Hurriyat (G) chairman Syed Ali Shah Geelani for “illegally” possessing foreign exchange of around $10,000, news agency PTI reported.
After completion of the probe and adjudication proceeding, the ED an order on Wednesday under the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA), levying the penalty and confiscating forex of $10,000 that was allegedly recovered from Geelani, they said.
The ED will also impose a penalty on Yasin Malik, Chairman of Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) and confiscate foreign exchange recovered from him. The adjudication proceedings against Malik are in progress.
On Wednesday, a Delhi court also allowed ED to quiz Geelani’s son-in-law Altaf Shah and others in connection with an alleged funding case.

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