India

Shutdown call by separatists affects normal life, restrictions imposed in Srinagar

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Normal life here was affected due to a strike called by separatists to protest the Supreme Court’s decision to stay an FIR against army personnel in the Shopian firing, while restrictions were imposed in parts of the city to maintain law and order.

According to a police official, strict restrictions under CrPC Section 144 have been imposed in Nowhatta, Rainawari, Khanyar, Safakadal and M R Gunj police station areas of the city, while partial restrictions were in force in Maisuma and Kralkhud areas.

Restrictions have been imposed as a precautionary measure to maintain law and order in view of the strike called by separatists, he said.

Normal life was affected elsewhere in the city as most of the shops, business establishments and fuel stations were shut, while public transport was off the roads, the official said.

However, private cars, cabs and auto-rickshaws were seen plying in many areas of the city where there were no restrictions, he said, adding similar reports were received from other district headquarters of the Valley.

Separatist groups on Thursday had called for a complete shutdown in Kashmir today to protest against the apex court’s decision.

The Joint Resistance Leadership, comprising Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Mohammad Yasin Malik, had issued a statement criticising the apex court for restraining the Jammu and Kashmir Police from taking any coercive steps against Army officers accused in the Shopian firing case.

Three civilians were killed when Army personnel fired at a stone-pelting mob in Ganovpora village in Shopian on January 27, prompting Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti to order an inquiry into the incident.

The FIR was registered against personnel of 10 Garhwal Rifles, including Major Aditya Kumar, under sections 302 (murder) and 307 (attempt to murder) of the Ranbir Penal Code.

Father of the Major Kumar, the officer named in the FIR, had approached the Supreme Court seeking the FIR be quashed.
The Supreme Court on February 12 restrained the Jammu and Kashmir Police from taking any coercive steps against Army officers and asked the state government to file a response within two weeks.

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