Hurriyat (G) leaders brave restrictions to reach Tral

SHABIR AHMAD

ANANTNAG: Braving severe restrictions, the Hurriyat (G) leaders managed to reach Tral Friday and took out a procession after congregational prayers.
According to reports, Hurriyat leaders Peer Hamza and Bashir Ahmad Qureshi addressed congregation at  Khankah-e-Faiz-e-Pannah  and paid glowing tributes to the memory of the slain Tral youth, Khalid Muzaffar Wani brother of Hizbul Mujahideen commander, Burhan Muzaffar Wani in a ‘fake encounter’ on Monday evening. The Hurriyat (G) chairman, Syed Ali Geelani had called for Tral Chalo Friday to protest the killing.
The killing triggered massive protests across the Valley. Hurriyat (M) chairman, Umar Farooq  called for shutdown in Pulwama district on Tuesday while as Hurriyat (G) had asked the people to march to Tral on Friday to express sympathy with the family of the slain youth.
To foil the march, the authorities had laid siege to the town, reports said. Barricades had been erected at several points to foil the march but the Hurriyat leaders, reports said, had reached Tral in advance.
In the main town, they said, police and Para-military
forces were deployed in strength to put foil the march but hundreds of youth from various villages made it a point to offer congregational prayers at the Khankah.
The procession marched towards the house of slain militant Yunus Geelani whose body was recovered from Kamla forests on Tuesday. The processionists raised pro-freedom and anti-army slogans.
Later they marched towards the residence of Khalid. However, the government forces intercepted them near Arigam triggering violent clashes.
The angry youth resorted to heavy stone throwing which was responded by tear smoke shells. The clashes continued for more than an hour, however nobody was injured.
Reports said that hundreds of youth from Dadsara and other villages tried to march towards Tral amid pro-freedom slogans. On reaching near Muqdam pora , the forces stopped them from marching ahead. The angry youth resorted to stone pelting. Nobody was injured.
Meanwhile, the police put Hurriyat (G) chairman, Syed Ali Geelani under house arrest and took the recently released leader, Masrat Alam into custody.