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Three-day shutdown in Valley; curbs imposed
Tribune News Service

Srinagar, February 9
Restrictions were imposed and mobile Internet services blocked across the Valley as a three-day shutdown to mark the anniversaries of the hanging of two Kashmiris, including Parliament attack convict Muhammad Afzal Guru, began in the region today.

A police spokesman said minor incidents of stone throwing occurred at Naidkhai, Sumbal, Papchan, Hadipora (near north Kashmir’s Sopore town) and Margund (near central Kashmir’s Kangan town).

“There are, however, no reports of any injury to anybody so far,” the spokesman said. In Srinagar, police and paramilitary personnel have been deployed and all roads leading to Lal Chowk sealed off.

Public transport was hit and businesses and markets remained closed. Mobile Internet services were suspended on Saturday night as a preventive measure, but these were restored after 18 hours on Sunday afternoon, a police official said.

Some separatist groups have given the call for the three-day shutdown to mark the first anniversary of the hanging of Parliament attack convict Muhammad Afzal Guru. His hanging in New Delhi’s Tihar Jail last year had thrown the region into a spiral of curfews, shutdowns and protests.

The shutdown also marks the anniversary of another Kashmiri militant leader, Muhammad Maqbool Bhat.

He was also hanged in the Tihar Jail on February 11, 1984. The state government has detained several separatist leaders, including Shabir Ahmad Shah and Nayeem Ahmad Khan, who recently separated from the moderate faction of the Hurriyat Conference and formed their own group.

JKLF chairman Yasin Malik, who had been evading detention, held a brief protest at Maisuma in the afternoon before he was detained and lodged at a nearby police station.

Hardline separatist Syed Ali Geelani, who returned from New Delhi on Saturday, was put under detention at his residence. Legislator and president of the Awami Ittehad Party Abdul Rashid was also detained while trying to lead a protest in the city.

Afzal Guru’s hanging

  • The three-day shutdown has been called to mark anniversaries of the hanging of two Kashmiris-Parliament attack convict Muhammad Afzal Guru and militant leader Muhammad Maqbool Bhat
  • Guru was hanged in Tihar Jail of New Delhi on February 9, 2013, while Bhat was hanged in the same jail on February 11, 1984.





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