Shutdown Affects Life In Kashmir Valley

6 September 2008
The Times of India

Srinagar: Life in the Kashmir valley was paralysed on Saturday due to the shutdown called by the joint coordination committee of both the separatist Hurriyat groups. Shops, business establishments, educational institutions and banks remained closed in this summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir. Attendance in government offices was very thin due to the non-availability of public transport. Reports reaching here from the district headquarters of Anantnag, Kulgam, Shopian, Pulwama, Badgam, Ganderbal, Bandipora, Kupwara and Baramulla indicated the total shutdown. The separatist coordination committee had called for peaceful symbolic protests on Friday to be followed by Saturday's shutdown across the valley. 'Today's shutdown call is against the agreement over the forest land between the Shri Amarnath Sangharsh Samiti and the government, which we have already rejected,' separatist leader Syed Ali Geelani said here. Meanwhile, Geelani, Mirwaiz Umer Farooq and Muhammad Yasin Malik continued to remain under house arrest for the third day Saturday. Geelani and the Mirwaiz were arrested on Aug 24, while Malik was detained on Aug 25 to prevent their participation in the proposed separatist march to city centre Lal Chowk on Aug 25. They had been released on the eve of the holy Muslim month of Ramadan that began here Tuesday.