Valley tense after killing of youth in police 'firing'

Valley tense after killing of youth in police 'firing'

A day after the killing of a teenage boy in alleged police firing in north Kashmir’s Bandipora district, authorities on Saturday imposed strict restrictions in several parts of the Valley, including Srinagar city, to thwart protests.

A spontaneous shutdown was observed in the Valley against the killing. The Jammu and Kashmir government has ordered a magisterial probe into the incident that led to the killing of 18-year-old Farhat Ahmad Dar and has directed the Additional Deputy Commissioner, Bandipora, to monitor the investigations. Police have registered an FIR and started inquest proceedings.

Due to the prevailing law and order situation, the Kashmir University announced postponement of all the post graduate level entrance and other examinations scheduled for March 16 and 17.

Reports said undeclared curfew was imposed in Naidkhi, Hajin and surrounding areas of Bandipora district, while Shahgund – the native village of the deceased youth – was sealed by security forces and no one was allowed to visit the village.

Police and paramilitary CRPF personnel were deployed in strength to foil any protests in the area. However, defying restrictions, hundreds of people participated in the funeral prayers of the deceased youth.

Eyewitnesses told Deccan Herald that clashes erupted in several parts of Bandipora district during the day. A massive procession from several villages tried to march towards Shahgund, the native village of the slain youth. “But the police and the CRPF personnel at Hajin Bridge didn’t allow them to proceed forward, triggering clashes,” they said.

The neighbouring Baramulla district was also under curfew-like restrictions. Reports said Baramulla, Palhallan, Pattan, Sangrama and Sopore were affected.

A police spokesman said the situation remained peaceful throughout the Kashmir valley. “However, a couple of stray stone-pelting incidents were reported from Hajin and Cement-bridge, Baramulla,” he said.

Authorities had placed most of the separatist leaders under house arrest to prevent them from leading protest rallies. While moderate Hurriyat chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq was placed under house arrest at his posh Nigeen residence, pro-independence JKLF chairman Mohammad Yasin Malik was not allowed to move out of his Maisuma residence.

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