July 2017 News

Kashmir Shuts Against Arrest Of Separatists

25 July 2017
Greater Kashmir
Abid Bashir

Srinagar: Kashmir observed a complete shutdown on Tuesday against the arrest of seven Hurriyat leaders by the National Investigating Agency (NIA) in connection with the alleged funding and 'subversive activities' in Kashmir. The shutdown call was given by Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Muhammad Yasin Malik, who had termed the arrest of these leaders as 'illegal.' Government had imposed strict restrictions in Khanyar, Nowhatta, MR Gunj, Safa Kadal and Rainawari areas in Downtown Srinagar. All the commercial establishments remained closed while vehicular movement was thin. Reports of shutdown were also received from all the district headquarters including Kupwara, Baramulla, Ganderbal, Pulwama, Shopian, Kulgam and Anantnag. Witnesses said that inter-district transport was plying normally. A witness said mild clashes between youth and government forces erupted at Habba Kadal where forces detained a youth on charges of stone-pelting. 'Forces resorted to lathi-charge to push back the protestors,' the witness said. Talking to reporters, director general of police SP Vaid while responding to query about arrests made by NIA, said : 'Ye jo public hai, ye sab janti hai (people know everything). Arrests have been made and law will take its own course. They have been produced before a court in Delhi.' About situation in Kashmir, the J&K police chief said restrictions were in place in a few areas. 'Rest of Kashmir was peaceful and shops were partially open in many areas and transport also plied partially. Strike call evoked partial response. Things were absolutely normal,' he said. Meanwhile, Tehsildar (south) on Tuesday extended remand of incarcerated Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front chairman Muhammad Yasin Malik till August 5, 2017, a JKLF spokesman said. 'Civil administration in Kashmir is working as subordinate to police and military officials. They should shun their robes of civility and wear police uniforms,' the spokesman quoted Malik as having said in his message from Central Jail. Meanwhile, a spokesman of Hurriyat Conference (G) said: 'New Delhi has deployed NIA to harass leaders and file fictitious cases against them.' 'They don't want to solve Kashmir issue. They are pursuing repressive policy to crush the Kashmir movement,' he said. He said, 'These haughty measures won't dampen our passion and we will pursue our mission till the issue is resolved as per aspirations of people. Hurriyat assures people that all these repressive and arbitrary measures won't deter the leaders and they will continue to raise their voice.' 'The United Nations, international community including USA, China, Iran, Turkey and OIC are witness to the fact that Kashmir is a disputed state and it needs to be resolved as per resolutions accepted in UNO,' the spokesman said. 'We hope that international foras would fulfill their obligations and resolve the issue so that ways and means are explored to make an end to war euphoria and prevailing uncertainty in the sub-continent,' he said. A spokesman of Hurriyat Conference (M) said arrest of leaders and activists from Srinagar on Monday was 'arbitrary and illegal.' 'We fear that the arrested leaders could be pressurized and harassed during interrogation and after being framed in fabricated case, false alibis (sic) could be produced against them to implicate and sentence them,' the spokesman said in a statement. While acknowledging the 'unwavering' support of the people for their political movement and the leadership, the Hurriyat (M) spokesman thanked them for observing a shutdown to protest the 'persecution of leadership.' The spokesman also condemned the repeated curfew and restrictions imposed in Downtown under the 'garb of maintaining law and order' and said that people of Downtown are the 'constant target of the state's revenge against Kashmiri people's political aspirations and their support to the movement.'