Restrictions, shutdown affects life in Indian-controlled Kashmir


Normal life in Muslim majority areas of Indian-controlled Kashmir was affected Sunday by restrictions imposed by authorities and shutdown called by separatist groups.

The restrictions were enforced by government forces in old parts of Srinagar city, the summer capital of Indian-controlled Kashmir and some areas of Bandipora. However, shutdown was observed in remaining parts of the restive region in response to a call made by separatist groups.

The strike was called to protest the killing of 21-year-old youth Farhat Ahmad Dar on Friday allegedly in police firing at village Naidkhai of Bandipora district, around 40 km north of Srinagar. Three people were also wounded in the firing, locals said.

Fearing clashes in wake of killing, the authorities on Saturday imposed toughrestrictions in sensitive areas and placed separatist leaders under house arrest.

Contingents of Indian police and paramilitary Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) were deployed across old Srinagar city and Bandipora district to stop protests against the killing.

Reports said clashes between protesters and Indian police were reported from several places.

"Situation remained peaceful throughout the valley. However, stray incidents of stone pelting were reported from main Chowk Bandipora and Hajan in Bandipora, Barsoo in Ganderbal and Azad Gunj in Baramulla," a government spokesman said.

"However, there were no reports of injury to anyone, until last reports came in."

The restrictions hampered traffic, while in other places shops and businesses remained closed in wake of the shutdown.

The local government in Indian-controlled Kashmir has ordered a magisterial probe into the killing.

Anti-India sentiment runs deep in the psyche of residents across Indian-controlled Kashmir. Residents in the restive region took to roads in protest, hurling brickbats and stones on contingents of police and CRPF personnel. The government forces respond by tear smoke shells and bullets, which often proves fatal.

A separatist movement challenging New Delhi's rule has been going on in Indian-controlled Kashmir since 1989.