Srinagar, Apr 06: A complete shutdown was observed across Kashmir on Friday against the recent civilian and militant killings.
Twenty people including 13 militants, 3 Army soldiers and 4 civilians were killed in three separate gun battles in South Kashmir on April 1, while over 100 civilians were injured in clashes with government forces. A youth Gowhar Ahmed Rather was also killed in police action in Kangan.
Commercial establishments and educational institutions remained closed, while public transport was off the roads. However, skeletal private vehicles were seen plying at many places in region’s capital.
Curbs were imposed in Srinagar’s old city and government forces were deployed at every lane and by lane to thwart any attempts of people taking out any protests.
South Kashmir areas also remained shut with heavy deployment of forces in its districts.
The Joint Hurriyat Leadershipheaded by Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umer Farooq and Muhammad Yasin Malik, has called for peaceful protests after Friday’s congregational prayers.
Geelani and Mirwaiz continued to remain under house arrest while Malik has been lodged at the Srinagar Central Jail.
Sporadic incidents of clashes and protests were witnessed in several areas of Srinagar, Pulwama, Shopian, Baramulla and Kupwara districts.
Station House Officer Nigeen Manzoor Ahmed was wounded after a stone hit his head near Dagh Park on the Foreshore road here.
Reports said that he has received over a dozen stitches on his forehead while his eye has also damaged partially.
Reports of clashes were received from several parts of Valley including Bunbazar, Mini secretariat, Imam Sahab, Memander areas of Shopian district, Qalampora, Rajpora, Newa areas of Pulwama, Azad Gung and Mishra Gali Palhallan areas of Baramulla, Foot Bridge Paramipora, Old Barzulla, Nowgam, Soura, Hyderpora, Foreshore road areas of Srinagar, Trehgam, Battergam, Drugmulla areas of Kupwara district, Chara-e-Sharief and Beerwah areas of Budgam district.
Six persons sustained pellet wounds in Shopian. They have been hospitalized. Around 15 persons and at least a dozen policemen including SHO Nageen sustained injuries during clashes.
Among the injured, a woman identified as Shakeela Begum (45) suffered injuries at Trehgam, Kupwara while as Abdul Rehman Dar (56) was injured in Soura, Srinagar.
Scores of students of Government Medical College (GMC) Srinagar also staged peaceful protests against the killings and use of forces on students and on other people protesting the Shopian and Kangan killings in forces’ action.
The apron donning students holding placards were joined by doctors and paramedics in GMC premises. They raised pro-freedom slogans.
The protesting doctors said they condemn the use of force inside hospitals and demand end to use of deadly pellets.
“We condemn the use of pellets, we can’t stand the heart wrenching sight of pellet hit youth who are brought here for treatment,” a doctor said.
No Friday prayers were allowed at historical Jamia Masjid here in Srinagar city. Geelani was supposed to offer Friday prayers at Hamzah Masjid at Amira Kadal, however, authorities detained him at his house. A protest was carried out by Anjuman Shari Shain at Budgam in which a large number of people participated who amid pro-freedom slogans denounced the civilian killings.
Police on Friday foiled a protest march of Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) at Abi Guzar here.
Curfew was imposed in Kangan area of central Kashmir’s Ganderbal district on Friday to stem protests against the killing of a youth in police action on Tuesday.
An official said that curfew has been imposed to prevent “law and order problems.”
Meanwhile, a complete shutdown is being observed on Friday in Banihal town over south Kashmir killings.
Reports said all the shops, other business establishment and schools remain closed in solidarity with victim families.
Amid a complete shutdown, clashes were government forces and youth were also reported from Trehgam town of north Kashmir’s Kupwara district on Friday.
Earlier, the government had shut all schools and colleges in the Valley following Thursday intense protesting by the students.