A deserted view of lalchowk during a strike in Srinagar during against Shrine burning.28-June-2012

SRINAGAR, Jun 28: The Kashmir remained tense as general strike and undeclared curfew continued for the third consecutive day today following the destruction of shrine of Sheikh Syed Abdul Qadir Jeelani (RA) in mysterious fire.
The normal life was out of gear on account of the strike called by the grand Mufti, Mufti Bashir-ud-Din, against what he described as “criminal conspiracy” behind the destruction of the shrine and the ”distortion of vital evidence by the state government.”
The most parts of the summer capital observed complete shutdown with shops, business establishments, markets and educational institutions avoiding routine business. The public transport was generally off the roads, and people, not in plenty, could be seen moving around in private vehicles.
The strike, however, showed lesser impact in the civil lines areas including Hyderpora, Sanatnagar, Chanapora, Natipora and Nowgam. Since morning, many shops in the areas did the routine business while public transport was also available, though in less abundance.
The attendance in government offices and banks was thin.
The old city continued to be under undeclared curfew. The areas falling under the jurisdiction of Khanyar, Nowhatta, M R Gunj, Rainawari, Safa kadal and Kralkhud Police stations, were sealed off. All approach roads were blocked while a heavy presence of paramilitary CRPF and police, in riot gear, ensured that no one ventured out.
“Two young boys were going towards Jamia Masjid to fetch sherwani for a groom, but they were stopped, beaten up and forced to turn back by the forces,” Niyaz Ahmad, a resident of Gojwara narrated.
Unlike yesterday, this morning the authorities did not make any announcements for people to stay indoors.
The relentless check on the civilian movement from dawn to dusk has created a desperate situation in the old city. Short of essential commodities, the residents are forced to nocturnal living.
The residents speaking with this reporter revealed that the shops open after the cordon is lifted, letting people purchase whatever eatables are available.
“When the forces leave after Magrib prayers, the grocery and medical stores in the interior areas open up. And we are forced to purchase at high rates the rotten vegetables, pulses or milk powder available in the shops. We have been living on potatoes, onions and Kehwa,” Shafiq Ahmad of Nowhatta said.
Clashes take place in most old city areas after the forces’ withdrawal. The last evening clashes were reported from Nawab Bazar, Safa Kadal, Nowhatta, Chantabal and several adjoining areas.
South/North Kashmir
A partial strike was observed in South and North Kashmir.
The reports from Pulwama, Anantnag, Kulgam, Bijbehara and several other South Kashmir districts said several shops and business establishments were open while a significant number of them remained closed. The public transport, reports said, too was available in limited strength.
Similar reports were received from Baramulla, Bandipora and Kupwara districts in the North.
The inter-district transport also remained affected. Only a limited number of buses and Sumos could be seen plying on the routes.
Separatists under house arrest
The separatist leaders including Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, Muhammad Yasin Malik, Shabir Ahmad Shah, Nayeem Ahmad Khan and Javid Ahmad Mir were under house arrest yet again.
The police and CRPF deployed at the residences of the leaders did not allow anyone of them to move out of the houses.
6 arrested at Kupwara
Six youths hurling stones at the vehicles at Kupwara in North Kashmir have been arrested by the police on charges of stone pelting, police said in an official handout.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email