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Shutdown disrupts normal life in Kashmir

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Srinagar, Feb 24: Authorities on Sunday imposed restrictions in parts of the city as a “precautionary measure” to maintain law and order in the wake of a shutdown called by the separatists.

Restrictions under Section 144 CrPC were imposed in five police station areas of Srinagar, a police official said.

He said curbs were imposed in police station areas of Nowhatta, Khanyar, Rainawari, MR Gunj and Safakadal.

The official said restrictions were imposed as a “precautionary measure to maintain law and order in view of the strike call”.

Separatists, under the banner of Joint Resistance Leadership (JRL), Saturday called for a shutdown in the Valley on Sunday against the crackdown on separatists.

The strike affected normal life across the Kashmir Valley.

Shops, fuel stations and other business establishments remained shut in Srinagar while public transport was off the roads, but some private cars and auto-rickshaws were seen plying in some areas of the city.

The weekly flea market was also shut as no stalls were put on the TRC Crossing-Batamaloo axis through city centre Lal Chowk.

Similar reports of shutdown were also received from other district headquarters of the Valley.

Meanwhile, authorities placed Muslim Conference president and ex-chairman Hurriyat Conference Professor Abdul Ghani Butt under house-arrest, his spokesman said on Sunday.

He said a posse of policemen arrived at the residence-cum-office of the Bhat on Saturday and asked him to stay indoors and not venture outside.

The spokesman strongly condemned the crackdown against separatists and other religious leaders.

He said these tactics will not work and for peace the resolution of the Kashmir conflict is must and dialogue is the only way to resolve the differences through peaceful means.

“To get this peace, we have to address the issues. No peace can exist in a war zone,” he said.

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