Srinagar, Apr 26 : Police in Srinagar fired tear gas to disperse demonstrators protesting against the alleged human rights violations by security forces.
The protest came hours after Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh began a two-day visit to Jammu. It erupted weeks after the Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons (APDP), an independent group in Kashmir, said they discovered nearly a thousand unmarked graves in cemeteries in 18 villages close to the Line of Control (LoC).
Over 3,000 people led by the moderate Hurriyat leader, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, marched through streets, carrying banners reading, "Stop human rights violations."
Half a dozen people were injured in the incident.
"We want to ask the Prime Minister what about the zero tolerance he spoke about in Kashmir at a time when we have unearthed 940 unidentified graves. We demand justice. We want to know who they are? Why were they killed? Their parents are desperately searching for their beloved," Farooq said. The APDP, which estimates that around 10,000 people have gone missing since 1989, claims that many of the missing could have ended up in these unmarked graves.
Authorities in Kashmir, however, have denied this allegation, saying such reports are intended to malign the security forces. According to authorities, separatist militants have kidnapped and murdered these people.
Amnesty International has appealed to the authorities to investigate the unmarked graves in north Kashmir on an urgent basis.