Separatist shutdown hits life across Kashmir

August 3rd, 2011 - 12:40 pm ICT by IANS  

Srinagar, Aug 3 (IANS) Life in Jammu and Kashmir in the capital here and in other towns of the valley was severely affected Wednesday by a shutdown called by separatists to protest the custodial death of a youth.

Hardline separatist leader Syed Ali Geelani, who heads the breakaway Hurriyat group, and Mirwaiz Umer Farooq, chairman of the moderate Hurriyat group, called for a valley-wide shutdown to attract international attention towards the death of Zamin Rashid alias Anjum, 26, in police custody, July 31 in Sopore town of north Kashmir.

Shops, educational institutions and public transport remained suspended in Srinagar, Sopore, Anantnag, Baramulla, Bandipora, Ganderbal, Pulwama, Badgam, Shopian, Kupwara and Kulgam towns.

Attendance in government offices, banks and post offices ran thin as public transport was not available. Private transport plied on some roads but its frequency was very low.

Youths burnt old tyres in old city areas here, including Nowhatta, to halt traffic.

A stray incident of stone pelting took place early Wednesday in the sensitive Maisuma locality here, adjacent to city centre Lal Chowk. But it was quickly controlled, police said.

Muhammad Ahsan Mir, sub-divisional magistrate of Sopore, who is carrying out a magisterial probe into the death, asked the police to provide details of all its personnel posted on duty when Rashid’s death occurred, sources told IANS.

North Kashmir Deputy Inspector General of Police Muneer Ahmad Khan will Wednesday constitute a special investigating team, on government orders, to probe the incident, a police officer said.

The state government Tuesday transferred Altaf Khan, Sopore superintendent of police, to ensure an impartial inquiry into Rashid’s death.

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