Friday, December 20, 2002, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

20 hurt in lathi charge
JKLF leader, 30 others held
Tribune News Service

A security jawan stands guard outside closed shops
A security jawan stands guard outside closed shops at Lal Chowk in Srinagar on Thursday. — PTI photo 

Srinagar, December 19
A general strike and protest demonstration were held here and in major towns of north Kashmir for the second consecutive day today against the death sentence awarded to three Kashmiris convicted in Parliament House attack.

Over 20 demonstrators were injured when the police fired into the air and resorted to lathi charge to quell demonstrators in Srinagar, and two major towns of Baramula and Sopore in north Kashmir.

JKLF leader Javed Ahmad Mir along with several of his supporters were taken into custody while taking out a protest demonstrations in the Lal Chowk area here this morning. At least 30 lawyers of the Jammu and Kashmir High Court were also taken into preventive custody while taking out a protest demonstration in Lal Chowk this morning.

A complete shutdown in response to the call given by the High Court Bar Association, was also observed here and other major towns of the valley in protest against the Delhi court order that awarded death sentence to three Kashmiris accused in the December 13 attack on Parliament House.

Over 12 protest demonstrators indulging in stone pelting were injured in police action in interior Srinagar city. The police lobbed tear gas shells and resorted to cane charge to quell the demonstrators protesting against the court order.

Similar protest demonstrations were also held in Baramula town in north Kashmir amid a general strike and incessant downpour. One of the three convicted in Parliament House attack, Mr S.A.R. Geelani, suspended lecturer of Delhi University belongs to Tawheed Gunj locality of Baramula town. Two others, Mohammad Afzal and Showkat Ahmad Gooru belong to the Doabgah area near Sopore, which also witnessed protest demonstration today.

The High Court Bar Association and the Dukhjtaran-e-Millat, separatist women’s underground outfit have called for a general strike tomorrow to protest against the court order.

Meanwhile, several separatist organisations and human rights groups have condemned and expressed concern over the Delhi court order. The All-Parties Hurriyat Conference (APHC), a conglomeration of various separatist groups have also expressed concern over the court order and condemned the police action against one its leader, Javed Ahmad Mir and his supporters who were taken into preventive custody.

An APHC spokesman also expressed concern over the alleged harassment and torture of many Kashmiris detained in several jails outside the state.


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