SRINAGAR: For the second consecutive day, the restrictions imposed by authorities to foil protests and shutdown called by separatists against killing of Hizbul Mujahideen commander Sabzar Bhat and his associate affected normal life in Valley on Monday while a 70-year-old mentally unsound person was arrested and released after he attempted to grab rifle of a paramilitary jawan, who took it as a rifle snatching bid.
An official said curfew-like restrictions remained in force for second day in areas falling under seven police stations in Srinagar.
The police and CRFF men had placed barricades in the curfew-hit areas to prevent movement of people.
The official said tough restrictions also remained in place in Anantnag town of south Kashmir.
He said in other parts of the Valley, restrictions under Section 144 remained in force and there was ban on assembly of more than five people at a single place.
In the areas, where restrictions were not enforced, life was crippled by the two-day shutdown called by the separatists against killing of Sabzar Bhat and his associate in an encounter with security forces on Saturday.
All shops, business establishments and petrol pumps in Srinagar and other parts of Valley remained closed while public transport was off the roads.
Sabzar, who was Burhan Wani’s successor and Hizb’s Kashmir chief, alongwith his associate Faizan Muzaffar were killed in a gunfight with security forces on Saturday. A civilian Aqib Rashid was killed in security forces firing on protestors after the encounter.
In view of tension, authorities had ordered closure of educational institutions across the Valley today. The exams scheduled for the day were also postponed.
Authorities have placed separatist leaders Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, Shabir Shah, Ayaz Akbar, Mohammad Ashraf Sehrai, Shahid-ul-Islam and others under house arrest to prevent them from leading any anti-India demonstration.
Pro-independence JKLF chairman Mohammad Yasin Malik was arrested yesterday from his residence at Maisuma in uptown Srinagar. He has been shifted to central jail, Srinagar.
The train services in Valley remained suspended for second day today while mobile internet services remained snapped for third day.
Defying restrictions, a group of youth took to roads at Tahab area in south Kashmir’s Pulwama district. Chanting pro-freedom and anti-India slogans, they pelted stones on the CRPF men, who fired tear smoke shells and resorted to baton charge to disperse them.
A police spokesman said barring stone pelting in Tahab in Pulwama, situation remained peaceful and under control throughout Kashmir.
Authorities have decided to continue the restrictions tomorrow in view of Tral march called by separatist leaders.
“Strict restrictions will remain imposed tomorrow in territorial jurisdiction of seven police stations in Srinagar district,” Deputy Commissioner Srinagar Farooq Ahmad Lone said.
He said all schools and colleges in Srinagar will remain closed tomorrow.
Divisional Commissioner Kashmir, Baseer Ahmad Khan, said class work in all schools/Higher Secondary Institutions and colleges in Valley shall remain suspended tomorrow as a precautionary measure.
Meanwhile, a 70-year-old mentally unsound person was arrested after he allegedly attempted to grab rifle of a CRPF jawan, who took it a weapon-snatching incident and raised an alarm.
A police officer said the main grabbed the rifle of a CRPF man at Lal Chowk area in south Kashmir’s Anantnag town today.
He said the jawan took it a weapon-snatching bid and raised an alarm.
“The other CRPF men rushed to the spot and took the elderly man into custody. He water handed over to police. During questioning, police found that the man was a mentally unsound and set him free,” he said.