Normal life was disrupted in districts in South Kashmir on Sunday because of a strike called by separatist groups as well as restrictions imposed by authorities. Both came in reaction to the death of two youths in Shopian’s Ganovpora in clashes with Army officers on Saturday.
Authorities suspended mobile internet services in the districts of Pulwama, Anantnag, Kulgam and Shopian and reduced the speed of broadband internet services to 128 kbps in the rest of the Valley, PTI reported. As a preventive measure, they have curbed movement of people in the jurisdictions of Srinagar’s Safakadal, Khanyar, Nowhatta, Rainawari and MR Gunj police stations.
On Sunday, shops and other businesses were closed, and public transport stayed off roads. Private vehicles, however, were plying in Srinagar’s Civil Lines area. Train services between Banihal and Baramulla have been suspended, NDTV reported.
The Army claimed it was forced to open fire on civilians in self defence after they began to pelt stones at a convoy and injure officers. “Considering the extreme gravity of the situation, the Army was constrained to open fire in self defence,” Colonel Rajesh Kalia said.
The two who died were identified as 20-year-old Javid Ahmad Bhat and 24-year-old Suhail Javid Lone.
The police filed a case against the Army’s 10th Garhwal Rifles unit, which was involved in the incident. The unit has been booked for murder and attempt to murder, Greater Kashmir reported. Among those named in the first information report is an Army Major.
The district administration has ordered a magisterial inquiry into the incident, and the officer has 20 days to submit a report.