Normal Life Disrupted Due To Strike3 November 2010
The Daily Excelsior
Srinagar: Barring couple of stray incidents of stone pelting, the law and order situation in Kashmir today remained peaceful even as normal life was disrupted due to strike call given by hard line faction of Hurriyat Conference headed by Syed Ali Shah Geelani. A group of youth started pelting stones at security forces posted on law and order duty in Maisuma locality of the city this evening, official sources said. A police vehicle was damaged in the stone pelting and the mob tried to set ablaze the vehicle. Police burst teargas shells and used batons to disperse stone-pelting protestors, the sources said adding police and CRPF reinforcements immediately rushed to the scene and chased away the stone-pelters. However, no one was injured in the ensuing clashes, which resulted in stopping of vehicles plying through the area. A police spokesman said security forces exercised restraint while dealing with the situation. 'Miscreants attempted to disrupt peace by resorting to stone pelting on the security forces deployments. They were chased and the situation was brought under control,' he added. In another incident, a group of youth also took to streets in Nowgam area on outskirts of the city and tried to block traffic on nearby Srinagar-Baramulla bypass this morning. However, the timely intervention of police brought the situation under control, the sources said. Meanwhile, normal life was disrupted in Srinagar and other major towns of Kashmir today due to general strike called by Geelani-led Huriryat. The main markets wore a deserted look with shops, business establishments and private offices closed and most of the public transport off the roads. However, private vehicles were seen plying in large numbers on almost all routes along with some commercial vehicles especially three-wheelers and cabs. Mini-buses were also seen plying on many routes in the city, while inter-district bus service operated in the morning. Several smaller towns including Chrar-e-Sharief in central Kashmir Budgam district, Tangmarg, Uri, Karnah and Tanghdar in North Kashmir's Baramulla and Kupwara districts and Kokernag in South Kashmir's Anantnag district also witnessed normal activities with most of the shops open and transport plying normally. Security forces, who were deployed in strength, were patrolling different areas of Srinagar and other major towns to maintain law and order and scuttle protests. Hurriyat Conference, which is spearheading the ongoing agitation in the Valley, had called for a general strike today and asked people to stage protest demonstrations at district headquarters against the large scale arrests.