Srinagar: A complete shutdown was observed across Kashmir on Monday to protest the continuous civilian killings and excesses by government forces on civilian population during Cordon and Search Operations (CASOs).
The call for shutdown was issued by the Joint Resistance Leadership (JRL) of octogenarian Hurriyat leader Syed Ali Geelani, Hurriyat Conference (M) chairperson Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, and JKLF chief Yasin Malik. The JRL has been spearheading protests in Kashmir since the killing of Hizb commander Burhan Wani in July 2016.
All shops and business establishments remained closed while transport was off the roads in most of the Valley.
The state administration had deployed additional forces at sensitive places in Srinagar to prevent untoward incidents, particularly in downtown areas.
While Geelani remained under detention at his Hyderpora residence, Mirwaiz Farooq was put under house arrest and Yasin Malik was detained at Kothibagh police station.
A top police official told Kashmir Reader that the measures were taken due to apprehensions that the leaders will try to take out protest demonstrations in the city.
The JRL in a statement said that government forces have created a “90s-like situation” and common people are being harassed without any reason.
“We can’t be spectators to the brutal killings of unarmed protesters,’’ the JRL said.
They also highlighted the injuries caused by the use of pellets and bullets by government forces to disperse protesters.
In north Kashmir, all shops and business establishments, tuition centers and private offices remained shut in Baramulla, Sopore, Pattan, Palhallan, Rafiabad, Langate, Handwara, Kupwara, Kralpora, Hajin and Bandipora areas. Public transport remained off the roads in all these places.
One school student, Ubaid Manzoor Lone, a resident of Nadihal, was injured in clashes with government forces near the Nadihal canal in Rafiabad area of Baramulla district. The condition of the youth was stated to be out of danger by hospital authorities in Baramulla.
In south Kashmir, reports of a complete shutdown were received from all districts. Both public and private transport remained off the roads in the southern districts.
In the morning hours, a few gunshots created panic in Shopian town. Police said they had thwarted a militant attack on a police station. Local sources said that they heard shots fired from three different directions. SSP Shopian SK Mishra told Kashmir Reader that militants had attacked a police station.
“Our jawans retaliated to the militants’ gunfire and the attack was foiled,” he said.
Rail services between Baramulla and Banihal were suspended for the day “as a precautionary measure”.
Internet services have also been suspended in southern Kashmir.
Killings of civilians and militants have resumed after the Government of India decided against extending its “suspension of combat operations” in the Valley for the holy month of Ramazan.