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Restrictions in Srinagar, Malik detained

Restrictions in Srinagar, Malik detained

Srinagar: Authorities on Monday imposed curfew-like restrictions in Srinagar to prevent a separatist-called protest march against the civilian killings which took place in Pulwama district on the weekend, police said.

Meanwhile, Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) chairman Yasin Malik was detained when he was leading a protest march to the Army headquarters in the city.

Malik along with his supporters started the march from Gaw Kadal area. When they reached Badshah Chowk in Maisuma, police intercepted them using tear gas shells.

The march by separatists to the Army's Chinar Corps headquarters here against the killing of seven civilians during an encounter was foiled after authorities imposed restrictions in Pulwama district and parts of Srinagar on Monday, officials said.

Shops, fuel stations and other business establishments were shut in the city, while security personnel patrolled sensitive areas here to thwart any untoward incident.

The separatists, under the banner of the Joint Resistance Leadership (JRL), comprising Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Mohammad Yasin Malik, had Saturday asked the people to march to the corps' headquarters at Jammu and Kashmir's Badami Bagh area.

The call for the march came after seven civilians died and several others were injured allegedly when security forces opened fire at a mob that thronged the site of an encounter in south Kashmir's Pulwama district in which three terrorists and a soldier were killed on Saturday.

The separatists had also called a three-day strike following the incident.

Roads leading to the Chinar Corps headquarters here were sealed and restrictions under Section 144 of the CrPC have been imposed in Pulwama district and eight police station areas of Srinagar, the officials said.

Mobile internet was suspended in Srinagar during the night as a precautionary measure, they said

The officials said curbs have been imposed in the territorial jurisdictions of Khanyar, Rainawari, Nowhatta, Safakadal, MR Gunj and Ram Munshibagh police stations of the city.

Partial restrictions were in place in Maisuma and Kralkhud police stations as well, they said.

The restrictions have been imposed as a precautionary measure to avoid any untoward incident, the officials said.

The roads leading to the Badami Bagh area have been sealed and no movement of people or transport is being allowed towards the Army installation, they said.

The police on Sunday had issued an advisory, saying traffic would not be allowed to ply on Pantha Chowk- Sonwar-Dalgate Road stretch.

"People who intend to travel to south Kashmir are advised to take Bypass Road. Similarly, people coming from south Kashmir shall take the Bypass Road to reach city centre. People who have to travel from Nishat and adjacent areas to reach city centre shall adopt Boulevard-Badyari Road," according to the advisory.

No traffic would be allowed to ply on Gupkar Road stretch from Grand Place crossing, it said.

"Commuters are requested to use alternate routes to reach their destinations. Any inconvenience caused is highly regretted," the advisory issued by Senior Superintendent of Police, Traffic (City), Srinagar, read.

The Army has also 'advised' people not to pay heed to the "misleading call" by the JRL.

The Army is always with the people of Kashmir and would foil all such evil attempts of terrorist-separatist-Pakistan nexus to pit the civilian population against the security forces. The public is once again advised not to pay heed to this misleading call by JRL, an Army spokesman said Sunday.

Security forces make every attempt to avoid any loss of civilian lives in cross-fire and minimise collateral damage to property, he had said.

Loss of any civilian life is always painful for the security forces. However, the vested interests are continuously at work to instigate and mobilise gullible youths to encounter sites. The call given by JRL for march to Badami Bagh Cantonment is another such attempt.

"The Indian Army strongly condemns this call by Pak proxies and advises people not to fall prey to such designs of anti-national forces, the spokesman had said.

During the unrest of 2016, separatists had called for a similar march to the Chinar Corps headquarters and then also authorities had undertaken similar measures to foil their plans.

The officials said shops, fuel stations and other business establishments were shut in the city due to the strike.

They said public transport was off the roads while fewer private cars, cabs and auto-rickshaws were seen plying in some areas.

Security forces have been deployed in strength at sensitive places to avoid any law and order problem, they said.

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