SRINAGAR: The news of Mannan Wani’s killing sent shock waves across the Valley as soon as it began to be circulated on social media, even though the government did not make the news public till well after several hours.
Soon after the encounter started in Handwara area of north Kashmir, the district administration announced suspension of class work in all colleges and higher secondary schools in Sopore sub-division, Baramulla town, and Pattan areas. Internet services were also snapped in these areas.
The Islamic University of Science and Technology announced closure of its campus for two days, “due to apprehensions of protests in the campus.”
Many colleges in Srinagar were also closed at mid-day by college authorities to stop students from holding protests.
Police withheld information regarding Mannan’s death till the afternoon, saying that they were ascertaining the identities of the killed militants. According to witnesses, government forces were first deployed in strength in sensitive areas of Srinagar before the news was made public.
Meanwhile, protests rocked the Zakura Campus of Kashmir University, where students raised pro-Mannan and pro-freedom slogans and held funeral prayers in absentia in the campus.
All across the city people were seen calling their families and friends informing them about the death of Mannan Wani and, fearing a law and order situation, asking them to come back home soon.
Bus and taxi stands in the city witnessed huge rush of employees and students from other districts desperately trying to get space in the vehicles to reach their respective places as there were apprehensions of imminent clashes and shutdown.