Kashmir shuts for detainees, over dozen protesters arrested

The strike called by Syed Ali Shah led Hurriyat Conference against the continued detention and alleged torture of detainees evoked almost a complete response in the Kashmir valley on Friday.

Amid the general strike, stone-pelting clashes were reported in old city here and Breine area in its outskirts post Friday prayers.

Shops, other business establishments and educational institutes including schools remained closed while public transport was mostly off the road in this summer capital. However, thin movement of private vehicles could be seen on all the major roads here.

In old city areas including Gojwara and Saraf Kadal, scores of youth took to street and clashed strengthened posse of police and paramilitary CRPF. The youth pelted stones at the contingents wearing riot gear.

The police and CRPF contingents resorted to baton charge to disperse the protesters but to no avail as stone-pelting youth continued to re-group after dispersing off momentarily. The clashes continued for several hours. The police and CRPF also arrested over dozen protesters, officials told PBI. Reports of minor stone pelting clashes were also received from Breine Nishat area in outskirts of Srinagar.

Hurriyat Conference had called for a complete against the continued detention of political prisoners, the arrest spree of minors, and alleged torture of pro-freedom leaders at Kotbalwal and Amphala jails.

Reports of strike were also received from other district headquarters including Baramulla and Bandipora in north Kashmir and Shopian, Anantnag, Kulgam and Pulwama in South Kashmir.

Reports of strike were also received from central Kashmir district of Budgam and Ganderbal.

A police spokesman here said that that after Friday prayers, “some miscreants resorted to stone pelting at Saraf Kadal area of down town Srinagar.”

“Police exercised maximum restraint in spite of grave provocations and to quell the mob chased the miscreants.”

“In the ensuing melee, some photo journalists who had intermingled with the crowd to cover this subversive activity got trampled down by the fleeing miscreants,” the spokesman added.