SRINAGAR: A shutdown was observed across Kashmir on Monday on the call of the Joint Resistance Leadership (JRL) to protest the killing of five local militants and a civilian by government forces in Kulgam last week.
Five Lashkar-e-Taiba and Hizbul Mujahideen militants, all local boys, were killed in a joint operation by army and other government forces in Kulgam’s Chowgam area, and a civilian was killed during clashes the same day. JRL had accused the government forces of turning Kashmir into a “battlefield”.
Witnesses told Kashmir Reader that all shops, business establishments, petrol pumps, schools and colleges remained closed in the south Kashmir districts and in Srinagar.
In north Kashmir, the towns of Baramulla, Sopore, Pattan, Palhalan, Rafiabad, Langate, Handwara, Kupwara, Kralpora, Bandipora and Hajin remained shut. The authorities had deployed teams of forces in sensitive areas, but there was no report of any clashes between people and government forces.
Reports said that a shutdown was also observed in Banihal town of Ramban district, one of the Muslim-dominated areas in Jammu region.
The shutdown affected public transport across Kashmir. In Srinagar, only a few vehicles were seen on the otherwise busy roads during the day. Many government offices witnessed thin attendance, reports said.
Attendance in post offices and banks was also affected because of the non-availability of public transport in Srinagar and other places.
All Kashmir University exams scheduled for Monday were postponed and rail services between the Valley and Banihal town of Jammu region were suspended for the day.