Police burst teargas in north Kashmir

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Baramulla, Aug 11 (UNI) Police burst teargas shells and resorted to repeated lathicharge to disperse hundreds of truck drivers and conductors who were joined by locals at Sopore Mandi in this north Kashmir district today.

Chairmen of Muslim League Mushtaq-ul-Islam and Islamic Students League Shakeel Ahmad Bakshi were arrested alongwith their 10 supporters near Sopore Mandi.

Official sources said apple township of Sopore was put under undeclared curfew since last night inview of the threat held by Kashmir Fruit Growers Association (KFGA).

A large number of security personnel have been deployed in the entire town since last evening. This morning people were being directed to remain in their homes as curfew has been imposed by the security forces.

However, no official confirmation about the imposition of curfew in the town was received.

The trouble at the Sopore Mandi started when a large number of people who were in the nearby localities, took to streets.

The drivers and conductors tried to take out their fruit trucks from Mandi, when security forces stopped them.

However, they were joined by others, insisted that they should be allowed to march towards Muzaffarabad with their fruit trucks.

Security forces had very tough time to control them, who were also joined by Mr Mushtaq and Mr Bakshi.

Raising pro-feedom and anti-Hindu fundamentalist slogans, the prostester clashed with the security forces near the main gate of the Mandi.

Police burst teargas shells and resorted to repeated lathicharge to diserpse them.

In Baramulla town curfew like situation prevailed since early this morning with security forces guarding the deserted streets on both sides of the roads.

Shops and business establishments remained closed and traffic was off the roads.

Government offices, banks and educational institutions wore a deserted look.

People were being advised by the security forces to remain indoor because of curfew. A large number of personnal form security forces have been deployed on the Srinagar-Pattan-Baramulla- Uri road since last night.

A report said more than 1000 people were waiting at border town of Uri to receive the fruit trucks there.

UNI XC/BAS KK NS1055

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