Kashmir shuts down against Handwara killings amid protests, clashes

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Srinagar, April 13: (GNS) Kashmir region on Wednesday observed a shutdown against the civilian killings in Handwara area of Kupwara district amid protests and clashes in several areas. The Administration here had imposed restrictions in six police station areas.
According to GNS correspondent, there was a complete shutdown in Srinagar with all the shops and business establishments closed. The public transport was also off the roads but private vehicles plied on all routes.
In view of the shutdown call, authorities imposed restrictions in Old City and Maisuma police stations since early morning. Hundreds of police and CRPF men were deployed in the areas which were placed under restrictions. The mobile bunkers and concertina wires were erected on various bridges and junctions of the Old City and Maisuma.
During the shutdown, the clashes between youths and forces erupted at Habba Kadal and Narbal areas in city here. Police lobbed several teargas shells to disperse the protesters. However no one was injured in these clashes. The clashes also erupted in entire downtown and Gawkadal soon after restrictions were lifted.
Police said two CRPF men namely Head Constable Rajesh Verma of 54 battalion and Constable Mukesh Mishra of 49th battalion got injured seriously and were admitted in SMHS Hospital Srinagar for treatment in downtown. “One of the jawans was later referred to Bone and Joints hospital Barzalla,” said the police.
The shutdown was also observed in all other districts of the Valley. A protest demonstration was held by people at Tral in south Kashmir on the first death anniversary of Khalid Muzzafar Wani, who was killed by army last year on April 12. The slain is the brother of Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani.
Meanwhile, a police spokesman said:” General public is requested to please refrain from indulging in lawlessness, remain calm and help the administration in maintaining peace and order.” The spokesman said barring Kupwara and Srinagar the situation in other parts of Valley remained peaceful.
Meanwhile, the restrictions shall continue in Srinagar tomorrow as well as pro-freedom leaders have called for strike again, a police official said. (GNS)