Strike, restrictions in Srinagar after a day’s normalcy

July 26th, 2010 - 12:47 pm ICT by IANS  

Srinagar, July 26 (IANS) Authorities imposed restrictions in many areas of Srinagar to prevent violence as a shutdown called by separatists crippled life here Monday.
“Curfew has been imposed in Batmaloo locality of the city while restrictions are in place in uptown Maisuma and old city areas,” a police officer said here.

Hardline separatist Hurriyat group headed by Syed Ali Geelani has called for a shutdown across the Kashmir Valley Monday to protest alleged human rights violations by the security forces.

Shops, educational institutions, business establishments and post offices here were closed while public transport went off roads. Skeletal private transport plied on city roads as people preferred to remain indoors.

Tension had gripped the Batmaloo area Sunday evening when the body of a 28-year-old man, identified as Farooq Ahmad Bhat, was recovered from a stream. While relatives alleged Bhat had been murdered, the police maintained he had committed suicide.

Bhat had gone missing after he left his home July 20.

“We have already registered a case in this incident and facts would be soon brought before the public,” a police officer said.

In a separate incident, people in Rafiabad area of north Kashmir’s Sopore district alleged that a youth, Tariq Ahmad, who was arrested July 18, had been tortured to death.

The youth, who was arrested for firing at a civilian in his Fidarpora village, had committed suicide inside the Panzala police station Sunday. Police claim he was a Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) operative.

“The youth was arrested on July 18 after he fired a bullet at a civilian in Fidarpora. He was an operative of the Laskar-e-Taiba and had been operating under the code name of Jaffar,” a police official said.

However, two policemen were suspended Sunday after the youth’s body was found inside the lock-up where he had reportedly committed suicide by hanging himself.

“A magisterial probe has been ordered into the incident,” said Javaid Ahmad Dar, legislator of Rafiabad, who is also a minister in the Omar Abdullah government.

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