Shutdown hits Kashmir Valley, Srinagar tense (Lead)

July 14th, 2010 - 11:06 pm ICT by IANS  

Srinagar, July 14 (IANS) The Kashmir Valley shut down Wednesday in response to a call by separatists while curfew-like restrictions imposed by authorities in several areas hit life in Srinagar. A few incidents of stone-pelting were reported.
Youth pelted stones at private vehicles in Chanapora and Harwan areas of Srinagar, forcing them to go off the roads in view of the separatist-sponsored shutdown.

“Except for some stone-pelting incidents in Chanapora and Harwan, which were controlled after security forces stepped in, the overall law and order situation across the Valley remained peaceful,” a senior police officer said here.

Lawyers in Srinagar held a protest march against the arrest of the Bar Association president Mian Qayoom, who was held under the Public Safety Act (PSA) by authorities last week.

Restrictions were imposed in Srinagar’s Old City as well as Maisuma and Batmaloo localities as a precautionary measure to maintain law and order, police said.

Security forces patrolled the areas, disallowing any pedestrian and vehicular movement.

Life in all major towns of the Valley was adversely affected as the hardline faction of the separatist Hurriyat Conference, led by Syed Ali Geelani, called for a two-day shutdown and asked people to hold street protests against alleged human rights violations.

At least 15 people, including a 25-year-old woman, have been killed in clashes between protesters and security forces since June 11.

An all-party meeting convened by Chief Minister Omar Abdullah Monday decided to hold an independent enquiry into the civilians deaths in firing by security forces since the present cycle of violence started in June.

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