Kashmir shuts against Chattergam killings

Curfew in Srinagar areas; 9 injured in clashes in Nowgam, Kulgam

At least nine persons were injured in clashes at different places in Kashmir on Wednesday amid Valley-wide shutdown against the killing of two youth in Army firing in Chattergam area of Budgam district on Monday evening.
The shutdown call was given by the Hurriyat Conference (G) Chairman Syed Ali Geelani, Hurriyat Conference (M) Chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, JKLF Chairman Muhammad Yasin Malik and other separatist leaders.
In Srinagar, the government had imposed curfew in areas falling under police stations Khanyar, Nowhatta, Mahraj Gunj, Rainawari, Safakadal and Nowgam.
Clashes between youth and government forces erupted in Nowgam area of Srinagar, and Kulgam area of south Kashmir.
The clashes at Nowgam erupted in the afternoon after police intercepted group of protestors in Banpur area. The protestors, chanting pro-freedom slogans, were marching towards Nowgam Chowk. The forces burst tear-smoke shells and fired pellets to disperse them. Five protestors were injured in the police action.
Reports of protests were received from Kulgam district of south Kashmir where groups of youth took to streets and held protest demonstrations against the killing of two youth—Faisal Yusuf and Meraj-ud-Din Dar—by soldiers of Army’s 53 RR at Chattergam on Monday. The protesters were demanding stern punishment to the guilty soldiers.  Reports said the protestors pelted stones on forces, triggering clashes in which four youth sustained minor injuries.
Elsewhere in Kashmir, normal life was disrupted due to the strike call. Shops and business establishments were closed and public transport was largely off the roads. The attendance in Government offices was thin.
Eyewitnesses and reports said police and CRPF men, armed with anti-riot gear, were deployed in strength across Srinagar and other towns of the Valley.
Reports of shutdown were also received from Anantnag (Islamabad), Pulwama and Shopian districts of south Kashmir and Sopore, Baramulla and other towns of north Kashmir. Partial shutdown was also observed in Ganderbal district of central Kashmir.
The Hurriyat Conference (M) chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq continued to remain under house arrest for the second consecutive day Wednesday.
Senior Hurriyat (M) leader Moulana Abass Ansari also remained under house arrest for fifth consecutive day.

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