Amid reports of rising attacks on Kashmiris in Jammu and other parts of the country, trade bodies in the Valley Saturday called for a strike on February 17 as a mark of protest.
The strike call was issued by the Kashmir Traders and Manufacturers Forum, Kashmir Economic Alliance and other trade bodies of the valley. Earlier, traders lowered their shutters on Saturday in city centre Lal Chowk and adjoining markets as a mark of protest against attacks on Kashmiris in Jammu and outside.
The shopkeepers downed their shutters at 3 pm following a shutdown call issued by all trade bodies of the valley. The traders also took out a protest march to condemn the attacks on Kashmiris in Jammu and outside.
The protesters demanded the safety of Kashmiri traders and students who are allegedly being harassed outside the valley. Earlier in the day, Kashmiri students in Dehradun alleged that they were asked to vacate their rented accommodations in Dehradun following tension over the killing of 49 CRPF personnel in Pulwama fidayeen attack on Thursday.
Meanwhile, Kashmiri employees posted in Jammu Saturday threatened to return to the Valley if the government didn't take measures to ensure their safety.
State president of Durbar Move (non-secretariat) Employees Federation, Owais Wani said that their families wer= e not safe in Jammu as the quarters provided by estates department were facing attacks by miscreants.
We had already appealed to the administration to provide foolproof security to quarters of employees, but the administration is not dealing with the situation seriously, he alleged.
He also claimed that the curfew imposed by the administration was confined to only papers as the youth were roaming on bikes and attacking quarters of Kashmiri employees in Jammu.
However, Deputy Commissioner Jammu, Ramesh Kumar said the situation was under control. I am on spot at Janipur. No (residential) quarter has been attacked, he said.