Curfew and separatist shutdown continue for 12th day in Jammu and Kashmir

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Srinagar, July 19: Authorities decided to impose curfew in the Valley on Tuesday for the 12th day running while separatists extended the protest shutdown for another three days here in Jammu and Kashmir.

A senior police officer said curfew will continue in parts of the Valley for the 12th day running on Tuesday to maintain law and order.


Two protesters were killed on Monday when a violent mob attacked an army patrol in Qazigund area of Anantnag district.

Police said four other persons were injured in the firing incident.

At least 45 people, including 43 civilian protesters and two policemen, have been killed in the spiralling violence that began in the Valley after a Hizbul commander was killed along with two of his associates in a gunfight with the security forces on July 7.

Authorities have snapped all mobile Internet connectivity and also suspended calling facility on mobile phones across the Valley.

Limited mobile phone connectivity is, however, available to subscribers on post paid mobile phones provided by Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL).

No vernacular or English language newspaper has been published in the Valley for the last three days.

Amitabh Mattoo, advisor to the state Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, told media that the decision to ban publication of newspapers was not taken at the instance of the Chief Minister.

Mattoo said the decision was taken at "the local level and heads would soon roll for taking such a harsh decision".

In a related development, the state government on Monday shifted Senior Superintendent of police (SSP) Badgam, Fayaz Ahmad as sources said he had been transferred for stopping printing of some local newspapers whose establishments are situated in Badgam district.

Mufti has convened an all party meeting in summer capital Srinagar on July 21 to discuss the prevailing law and order situation in the Valley.

Opposition National Conference, Congress, Communist Party of India-Marxist and others have been invited to the meeting.

Addressing a meeting of senior bureaucrats in summer capital Srinagar on Monday, Mehbooba Mufti stressed on the importance of opening educational institutions as soon as possible to protect the future of students.

Schools, colleges and universities have been closed by the authorities till July 25 because of the prevailing law and order situation in the Valley.

Meanwhile, the separatists including Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umer Farooq and Yasin Malik have announced extension of the protest shutdown till Friday.

Security has been further tightened in the Valley as Pakistan government has announced to observe a "Black Day" on Tuesday to express solidarity with the people of Kashmir.

Rejecting 'plebiscite' demands as an "outdated" idea, the government today asserted that Kashmiris are "our own people" who are being "misguided" as it blamed Pakistan for the unrest in the valley and said all parties will be taken along in dealing with the situation.

The issue of 10-day-old unrest in Kashmir resonated in Rajya Sabha on the opening day of the Monsoon session, with the House taking up urgent discussion during which the opposition slammed the government and pressed for holding an all-party meet while pitching for a political solution rather than using "barrel of the gun".

The opposition, while attacking Pakistan for fanning trouble in Kashmir, asked the government to initiate a political process and direct security forces to exercise restraint while dealing with protests.

Replying to the debate, Home Minister Rajnath Singh affirmed that while militancy will be dealt with sternly, there should be "no instant" use of bullets while dealing with mobs which should first be tackled by the use of teargas and water cannons.

The use of pellet guns, which have been blamed for most civilian injuries, would be looked into, regarding which he will talk to Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, he said.

Singh said Prime Minister Narendra Modi and he himself had asked security forces to exercise maximum restraint in dealing with mob violence which started after the killing of militant commander Burhan Wani in an encounter on July 8.

The Home Minister said he had, on Saturday last, expressed desire to visit Kashmir and have a dialogue with the people directly. Mehbooba, while welcoming the offer, told him that after the situation normalises a bit, she will come to Delhi and have a meeting with him to discuss in what format talks can be held, he said.

"Whatever is happening in Kashmir is Pakistan-sponsored.

The name is 'Pakistan', but its acts are 'na-pak' (not pious)," Singh said.

Referring to the demands for 'plebiscite', he ruled it out, saying it is "outdated" and people of Kashmir are being "misguided" on this issue.

"Kashmiris are our own people. We will bring them on the right path... We will make them aware of the reality," he said.

Invoking Atal Bihari Vajpayee's famous remarks of 'Kashmiriyat, Jamhooriyat and Insaniyat' (kashmiriyat, democracy and humanity), he said "If there is any place for Kashmiriyat in 'Jamhooriyat' (democracy), it can be only on the basis of 'Insaniyat' (humanity) and not 'Haivaniyat' (devilish acts). Those believing in Kashmiriyat and Insaniyat, cannot give space to haivaniyat." .


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