SRINAGAR Life across the Kashmir Valley came to a grinding halt on Monday as shops and business establishments remained closed while traffic was off the roads. The call for the strike was given by joint resistance leadership (JRL) against the conduct of local body polls in the state. At least ten people, including a woman was injured during protests at several places.
All shops, offices, financial institutions and petrol pumps remained closed today in Srinagar and other parts of the Valley in wake of the strike. The shutdown also witnessed thin movement of traffic on the otherwise busy roads and streets of the city and elsewhere.
Reports said that clashes broke out in parts of the Valley. The authorities also blocked internet service in Srinagar and south Kashmir to conduct the polls.
In Lankreshipora village of Bandipora, a woman was injured when government forces used tear gas canisters and pellets to disperse anti-election protesters, witnesses said. Shabeena, wife of Javed Ahmad received multiple pellet injuries in the action of government forces.
Adil Ahmad Buhru, a BJP candidate from Ward 15 was injured when protesters threw stones at him near Dachigam polling booth. Police, however denied that Buhru was injured.
Buhrau said that as he came out after casting vote in ward number 2, youth pelted stones at him. My black scorpio (JK02AA-2712) was damaged in the incident, he said and thanked police for immediately shifting him to hospital.
Clashes also erupted in Old town of the neighbouring Baramulla, where angry protesters engaged government forces in pitched battles in the Old Town, witnesses said. However, no one was injured in the clashes.
In south Kashmirs Anantnag district, protesters fought pitched with government forces in Janglat Mandi area, witnesses said. One person was injured as the government forces and protesters exchanged brickbats in the area.
Clashes were also reported from many parts of the city outskirts, including Parimpora, Noorbagh, Bagh-e-Mehtab, Mochou and Karalpora.
At Kralpora, government forces lobbed tear smoke shells after failing to disperse anti-election protesters with baton charge. At least four youth, witnesses said were injured in the violent protests that continued for several hours.
In Parimpora and Noorbagh localities, three people were reportedly injured in the stone pelting protests. (with inputs from GNS/CNS)
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