JAMMU: Protests have spread to the Muslim-dominated areas of Jammu, even as the Kashmir valley remained on the edge for the 35th day of the unrest on Friday.
Curfew was re-imposed in parts of the Kashmir valley and except BSNL the entire mobile telephony was suspended to prevent protests and stone pelting on Friday.
Despite strict security measures, people defied the curfew and clashed with the security forces at a number of places across the Valley. Scores of people have been injured in the clashes.
Massive protests were held in the Doda township of Jammu division on Friday when hundreds of people assembled post-prayers and shouted slogans against the killings in the Valley.
Protestors later clashed with police which used lathi charge to disperse the stone pelting mob. Several people including some cops were injured in the incident.
Protestors later took out a march from the local mosque to the main Jamia Masjid where several leaders addressed the gathering. Seerat Committee, Doda, called for a three-day shutdown against the police action.
“Nothing much has happened. Everything is fine. Situation is under control”, said Zahid Manhas, superintendent of police, Doda.
Curfew was inposed in Srinagar and towns of Ganderbal, Budgam, Anantnag, Shopian, Baramulla and Sopore to prevent violence on Friday.
People, however, defied the curfew and organised massive pro-Azadi protests after the Friday namaz. Police said more than three dozen incidents of stone pelting were reported from different districts of the Valley including Anantnag, Pulwama, Kulgam, Shopian, Baramulla, Sopore, Kupwara and Bandipora.
“After Friday prayers miscreants assembled at various places and tried to disrupt vehicular movement. At most of the places the miscreants started pelting stones on moving vehicles, police and security force deployments”, a police spokesman said.
Police noted that their deployments exercised the utmost restraint despite severe provocations at a number of places. Many police and security force men have been reportedly injured during these clashes.
“Miscreants assembled on the road and pelted stones on security forces at Arhama in Ganderbal disrict. While tackling the situation six persons were injured. About 300-400 miscreants assembled on the road and pelted stones at police and security forces at Dooru Tangmarg. Two persons were injured, one of whom was shifted to Srinagar”, he said.
Police said miscreants pelted stones at police and security forces at Uttrsoo in Anantnag. “While dispersing the mob, four persons suffered minor injuries and were discharged from hospital after first aid”, he said.
Congregational Friday namaz was not offered for the fifth consecutive week at Jamia Masjid in Srinagar due to the curfew imposed by authorities. Security forces had sealed off all the roads and forces were deployed even at nooks and corners to avoid any processions from taking place.
Moderate Hurriyat Chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq strongly denounced the government for the continuous imposition of curfew and the barring of Friday congregational prayers at Srinagar’s historic Jamia Masjid.
“The government has turned the lives of Kashmiris into hell by imposing curfew and restrictions. Suspending mobile phone, internet and other communication services, is being done to punish the people of Kashmir for their unflinching support to the freedom struggle of Kashmir”, said Mirwaiz
Court orders authopsy supervision
The exhumation and autopsy of a 26-year-old man’s body, who was killed allegedly by police at Tengpora in Batamaloo area of Srinagar on July 10, would be carried out under the supervision of the District and Sessions Judge, the Supreme Court on Friday ordered.
Abdul Rehman Mir had alleged that his son Shabir Ahmad Mir was killed by police at his home on July 10 while the Jammu and Kashmir police had claimed that he died during protests in the Valley.
The bench headed by Justice P C Ghose observed that “it is a serious matter and such a situation should be handled with humane approach and extreme sensitivity.”
Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi assured the court that the probe would have the highest level of transparency and that the authorities would leave no stone unturned to get to the bottom of the case.
In its order, the bench said that the District and Sessions Judge of Srinagar would be at liberty to have the assistance of officers of his choice for the impartial exercise of carrying out the exhumation and autopsy.
It said that all steps would be taken in accordance with the law and ordered that the entire exercise to be completed within three weeks.