Shutdown paralyses normal life in Kashmir
Restrictions in Srinagar areas
Srinagar, May 07: Normal life came to a halt in Kashmir Monday on a call for shutdown by separatists to protest the deaths of five civilians near an encounter site in Shopian district yesterday.
Separatists — Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Mohammad Yasin Malik – had called for a complete strike to protest against the deaths of the civilians during clashes with government forces following an encounter in which five militants, including an assistant professor from the Kashmir University, were killed.
The separatists had also called for a sit-in against the deaths outside the Civil Secretariat, which opened today as part of the traditional ‘Darbar Move’ practice, here.
However, while Geelani and Mirwaiz were placed under house-arrest, Malik has been taken into preventive custody since Saturday.
In a statement here, the Hurriyat-G spokesperson said police detained Geelani outside his Hydepora residence-cum-office.
“Geelani tried to come out of his Hyderpora residence but policemen posted outside prevented him from doing so,” the spokesperson said.
Mirwaiz also attempted to defy house-arrest and come out of his residence, but was not allowed by the police to do so, Hurriyat-M said.
Meanwhile, schools, colleges and other educational institutions remained closed “as a precautionary measure to prevent any law and order situation,” officials said.
The Kashmir University has cancelled all academic activity for two days and postponed the exams scheduled to be held today, and on Tuesday as well.
Shops and other business establishments remained closed while public transport remained off the roads due to the strike call.
The authorities also imposed restrictions on the movement of people in seven police station areas of the city — Maharajgunj, Rainawari, Khanyar, Nowhtatta, Safa Kadal, Maisuma and Kralkhud.
Restrictions were also imposed in Pulwama and Shopian districts of south Kashmir while government forces were deployed in strength across the Valley for maintaining law and order, a police official said.
The official said the situation across the Valley remained peaceful.
Train services from Banihal to Baramulla were also suspended while Internet services in mobile devices continued to remain suspended for the third day today in south and central Kashmir, including in Srinagar city.