M A I N   N E W S

Srinagar under curfew, Valley reacts violently
Minister’s house attacked, 20 hurt in clashes
Tribune News Service & PTI

Srinagar, September 12
Security forces fired in the air and lobbed teargas shells after a mob attacked a J &K minister’s house on a day when 20 persons were injured in clashes in the Valley and curfew was reimposed here and six other towns.

A mob comprising 300 persons attacked the house of Education Minister Peerzada Muhammad Sayeed in Anantnag. As per sources, the minister was inside the house when the attack took place.

“Security personnel initially used batons and teargas shells to disperse the violent mob, but after the stone pelters resorted to violence, they had to open fire,” said police. Five persons were injured in the clash.

Meanwhile, curfew, which had been lifted from the entire Kashmir valley on September 9 ahead of Eid, was reimposed in Srinagar city, south Kashmir towns of Anantnag, Bijbehara Pulwama, Kakapora and Sopore and Baramulla towns in the north, sources said.

The decision to clamp curfew in the city and other parts of the Valley was taken after a high-level meeting of civil and security forces officials here last night, they said.

Meanwhile, protesters defied curfew and resorted to heavy stone pelting and attacked the police and security forces camps in various areas. At Wangam village in Kralgund, Handwara, protesters set ablaze Government Middle School. Stones were hurled at security forces at Drangbal in Pampore and also in Sabzi Mundi, Soura, and Gowkadal, Srinagar.

Protesters also threw stones on Police Post, Pothkhak, Sopore. In Baramulla, eight policemen were injured when protesters threw stones at them.

One CRPF mobile bunker was also attacked with a petrol bomb. Protesters also tried to attack Police Lines, Awantipora.





Mirwaiz, five others booked

Srinagar, September 12
The Jammu and Kashmir Police today registered three cases against Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, chairman of Hurriyat’s moderate faction, and other separatist leaders for allegedly inciting yesterday’s violence during which government properties were torched by mobs.

An FIR was registered against the Mirwaiz at Shaheedgunj Police Station in Srinagar city under various sections of the Ranbir Penal Code (RPC). Another case has been registered against the moderate Hurriyat chairman and four others at Safakadal police station in the old city.

Senior hardline Hurriyat leader Nissar Hussain Rather has also been booked.



Meanwhile, Delhi in a fix over rollback of AFSPA
Ashok Tuteja
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 12
Large-scale disturbances in Srinagar yesterday after the Eid prayers seem to have further narrowed down the options available to the Centre for dealing with the situation in Jammu and Kashmir, amid the BJP’s demand to replace Chief Minister Omar Abdullah.

A meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) is likely to take place tomorrow evening in the backdrop of differences within the Cabinet over the proposal to lift the controversial Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) from some districts in the state.

The BJP, meanwhile, opposed any move to dilute the AFSPA. The Defence Ministry is said to be opposed to the partial withdrawal of the AFPSA in the state or any other kind of dilution in the act, which gives sweeping powers to the security forces.

The Congress Core Group had discussed the situation in the state on Friday and a meeting of the CCS was to be held on Saturday to work out the Centre’s package for Kashmir. However, the CCS could not be convened since two of its members were not in the Capital.

But yesterday’s incidents in which separatist groups indulged in violence and shouted anti-nationals slogans have unnerved the Centre. Its dilemma is that any move to dilute the AFPSA would further embolden the separatists. Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, who was in the Capital, met Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad. The meeting came following reports that Azad had sharply criticised the CM for his handling of the situation in the Valley at the core group meeting on Friday.

The BJP convened an urgent meeting this evening to discuss its stand on Kashmir on the eve of the likely meeting of the CCS. It was attended, among others, by senior leaders LK Advani, Sushma Swaraj and Arun Jaitley.

In a statement later, the party said an “unpopular CM” (Omar Abdullah) suffered complete alienation from his people. “It is time he is replaced by a more acceptable person,” the statement added.

The BJP also said the government should not consider lifting the AFSPA from any disturbed district of the state. The security environment must be strengthened, the miscreants must feel scared and not allowed to call the shots, it added.



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