Curfew imposed in Jammu’s Hiranagar town

August 22nd, 2008 - 11:20 pm ICT by IANS  

Jammu, Aug 22 (IANS) Curfew was imposed Friday evening in Hiranagar town, about 60 km southwest of here, after a violent mob laid siege to a police station demanding the release of a group of people the police had arrested.More than a dozen protesters were arrested early Friday morning on charges of stoning vehicles plying on the nearby Jammu-Pathankote highway, the lifeline to Jammu and Kashmir.

As the mob turned violent and torched a truck parked within the police station, the police resorted to a baton charge and lobbed teargas shells, and also fired in the air to control the situation. The army was also called out to assist in keeping the protesters at bay.

A senior official said that the authorities had to resort to these measures as the situation was threatening to go out of control.

“We cannot allow hooligans to take the law into their hands,” the official told IANS.

Meanwhile, curfew was relaxed in Jammu city and the day passed off peacefully, though protest marches continued all over the region to press the demanding that 40 hectares of land be immediately returned to the Shri Amarnath Shrine Board.

In another development, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) spokesman Hari Om asked the Congress leaders in Delhi to “get their facts right about the Jammu agitation”.

“It is not an agitation by the RSS (Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh) or the Bajrang Dal. It is a peoples’ movement under the banner of Shri Amarnath Yatra Sangarsh Samiti to which many Congress leaders in Jammu have extended their full support,” Hari Om said, reacting to a Congress leader’s charge that the Jammu agitators were “following the communal agenda of the RSS and Bajrang Dal”.

He also asked local Congress leaders to “properly brief their party leaders in Delhi and ask them not to cause an unnecessary controversy and confusion”.

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