Separatists call for peaceful protests Friday

September 3rd, 2008 - 10:51 pm ICT by IANS  

Srinagar, Sep 3 (IANS) The joint coordination committee of both the Hurriyat groups Wednesday asked Kashmiris to hold peaceful protests Friday and observe a shutdown in the Kashmir Valley the next day.The committee made the appeal after a three-hour meeting of the Hurriyat groups headed by Syed Ali Geelani and Mirwaiz Umer Farooq at the Mirwaiz Manzil in the old city of Srinagar.

“After Friday prayers, people would hold peaceful protests for half hour in their areas. There would be no shutdown Friday,” it said.

“This would be followed by a complete valley-wide protest shutdown Saturday,” it said. The statement said that there would be no shutdown Sunday.

Contrary to expectations here that the coordination committee would announce a separatist march to Lal Chowk, the city centre, the decision is seen as a mild reaction to the agreement under which the government has made available land for the use of the board that oversses the Amarnath Hindu shrine.

The coordination committee, with representatives from both the separatist Hurriyat groups, was formed here in the wake of massive protests against the alleged economic blockade of the valley by protesters in Jammu region demanding the restoration of forest land to the Amarnath board.

People living in Srinagar and other parts of the Kashmir Valley are still experiencing shortages of many essential supplies including food, edible oils, cooking gas, vegetables, fruits and kerosene oil.

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