Srinagar Erupts In Protest And Violence
JKLF leader Yasin Malik detained in Srinagar
SRINAGAR: Protests erupted in Srinagar city ahead of Friday prayers during which a civilian and a Jammu and Kashmir Police constable suffered injuries.
Officials said clashes broke out between government forces and protesters in Habba Kadal locality of old city after authorities thwarted the separatists' proposed march to Batengu, the native village the Kashmiri trucker who succumbed to injuries at Safdarjung hospital in Delhi on Sunday.
The identity of the new victims could not be ascertained immediately, although their condition is reported to be stable.
Authorities have imposed curfew-like restrictions and separatist leaders are under house-arrest to prevent protests over the trucker's murder. Severe restrictions have been imposed in parts of Srinagar city and Anantnag district to thwart protests called by the Hurriyat leaders against the death of Zahid Ahmad, who was set afire on October 9 by the Hindu right-wing activists in J&K's Udhampur district.
"In order to prevent any law and order situation, Sec 144 has been clamped in Rainawari, Khanyar, Nowhatta, M.R.Gunj, Safakadal and Maisuma areas of Srinagar city as well as parts of Anantnag district," a senior J&K Police officer, wishing anonymity, said.
The officer said additional deployment of police and paramilitary forces has been made in sensitive areas of the Valley. In capital Srinagar, concertina wire has been spread out on many roads where government forces, armed with riot gear and automatic guns, are standing by to deal with any eventuality.
Moderate Hurriyat chairman, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, has invited the veteran Hurriyat leader, Syed Ali Geelani and JKLF chief, Yasin Malik, for a joint sit-in protest outside the historic Jamia Masjid in old city against Zahid's killing after the Friday prayers.
Fearing protests, all the educational institutions in the city are closed. The University of Kashmir and Jammu Kashmir Public Service Commission have postponed their exams scheduled on Friday while as some trade bodies have also supported the protest call of separatists.
To prevent any flare-up, the government has house-arrested all the separatist leaders including Geelani, who had called for protests afterFriday prayers, Mirwaiz, Malik, Jammu Kashmir National Front's Nayeem Khan and Democratic Freedom Party's Shabir Shah who have been repeatedly stopped, excluding Malik, from meeting the victim's family in Botengu.
The latest flare-up was sparked on October 9 when a Kashmir-bound truck was attacked with petrol bombs by the Hindu right-wing activists, one of them a suspended J&K Police constable, in Udhampur over communal tensions sparked by the rumours of cow slaughter.