Separatist call shuts down Kashmir Valley

Separatist call shuts down Kashmir Valley

''Curfew has been imposed in Srinagar city, Sopore and Bandipora towns to prevent any violence at these places. Restrictions imposed in other towns like Baramulla, Anantnag, Pulwama and Handwara would be reviewed during the day,'' a senior police officer said.
“We have lifted restrictions from Badgam town today (Monday),” he added.

The hardline faction of the separatist Hurriyat group headed by Syed Ali Geelani called for a Valley-wide shutdown Monday as part of its Quit Kashmir campaign.

Shops, educational institutions and business establishments remained closed throughout the Valley. Public transport went off roads while a few private vehicles plied in areas where restrictions were not strictly imposed.

The Valley has been in the throes of a bloody public unrest since June 11. As many as 57 civilians have been killed in security force action as riotous, stone-pelting mobs engaged security personnel and attacked paramilitary camps and police stations at different places.

Heavy rains hampered the operations of security forces against armed militants in an ongoing gunfight in Jammu and Kashmir's Rajouri district on Monday, a day after a soldier and two terrorists were killed.

The shootout in Thanna Mandi area, about 180 km north of Jammu, began on Saturday when an army team led by Major S K Mahapatra traced a group of militants in the forested area. In the ensuing gunfight, Mahapatra was injured and a soldier was killed on Sunday.

"Today (Monday) is the third day of the encounter. Rains started in the morning and hampered operations," a senior army official told IANS.

"But we are trying to keep our cordon intact to keep militants and their movements in check," the official said.

Police suspect that the militants belong to Lashkar-e-Taeba.

The operations are taking place close to the area where terrorists fired at a convoy of the army and a civilian bus Wednesday. Two passengers were killed and 17 injured in the attack.

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