Even as Kashmir celebrated Eid Wednesday, protests rocked several parts of the Valley on a call given by the separatists. Several protesters and police personnel were injured in clashes through the day.
Despite the state government putting separatist leaders under house arrest, people took to the streets in several parts of the Valley.
Police said at least 21 of its personnel were injured in different clashes. “Elaborate security arrangements were made and almost all the congregations dispersed off peacefully… However, miscreants indulged in stone pelting at some places including Sopore, Srinagar and Anantnag. Police and security forces exercised maximum restraint. Twenty-one police and security personnel, including two police officers, were injured,” said a police spokesman.
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The biggest protest march was taken out from Srinagar’s Eidgah ground where Hurriyat leader Mirwaiz Umar Farooq was scheduled to lead prayers. While Mirwaiz was put under house arrest, thousands offered their Eid prayers in the ground.
As the protesters took to streets, they soon clashed with police, hurling stones at them. Police then fired teargas shells and rubber bullets to disperse the mob. Several protesters were also injured in the clashes. People accused police and CRPF of beating old men and vandalising public property including cars parked outside the Eidgah ground.
Protests also erupted at Hyderpora, where Hurriyat chairman Syed Ali Shah Geelani resides, where youths indulged in stone-pelting. In south Kashmir’s Anantnag town, similar protests erupted at several places soon after Eid prayers, which was followed by a police crackdown.
Protesters also clashed with the police in Sopore town, which is Geelani’s native place. Many protesters were injured, with two hit by pellets fired by police.
The protest call was against the apparent move to create Sainik, separate Pandit colonies, along with the new Industrial Policy and the reported move to put religious scholars under surveillance.