Protests, Violence Amid Strike Over Hyderbad Death

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Demos, Clashes In Pulwama Despite Clampdown

SRINAGAR: Commercial activity in Srinagar and outlying towns remained suspended and public transport off the roads on Monday due to a joint strike called by separatists over the death of a Kashmiri student in Hyderabad, even as a number of persons were injured in separate violent incidents erupting during protests across the Valley.

The Muttahida Majlis-e-Mashawarat (MMM), or the United Consultative Council, set up by separatist groups in the wake of the execution of Muhammad Afzal Guru, had announced the shutdown after research scholar Muddassir Kamran Malla of Pulwama was found hanging in his hostel room in Hyderabad.

Protests and severe stone-pelting was reported from some areas of Malla’s home district where authorities had clamped curfew-like restrictions as a precautionary measure.

Groups of protestors attacked police and paramilitary deployments with stones in the Kakpora, Neev and Pulwama town areas, facing tear gas shelling and cane charges in retaliation.

Residents alleged that forces personnel had damaged private property during action against violent protestors.

Isolated stone-pelting incidents were also reported from a few other South Kashmir areas, but the situation remained calm in Anantnag and Shopian towns .      

Clashes broke out in the Central Srinagar area of Hari Singh High Street when police and paramilitary men used force to disperse protestors holding demonstrations in the city’s commercial hub.

Brick-batting and retaliatory tear gas shelling went on intermittently for several hours, throwing the surrounding localities into chaos, reports said.

Incidents of stone-pelting were reported from a number of old city areas like Rajouri Kadal, Nauhatta, Hawal, Kaw Dara, and Saraf Kadal, where groups of youth attacked passing vehicles.

Violence broke out during protests in the Batmalu and Bemina areas of the city as well.

In North Kashmir, protestors blocked the Srinagar-Muzaffarabad Highway at Narbal, and fought pitched battles with the police and the CRPF in the Baramulla town.

Several persons were said to have been injured in the Baramulla town, one of them receiving pellet injuries in retaliatory action by the forces.     

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