Srinagar: Normal life in Kashmir valley was
on Friday disrupted due to a strike called by hardline Hurriyat
Conference chairman Syed Ali Shah Geelani in protest against
alleged detention of "minors" for their involvement in
separatist activities, a claim rubbished by the police.
Shops and business establishments in the commercial hub
of Lal Chowk and adjoining areas remain closed due to the
strike, officials said.
Though private schools remain closed in most parts of the
valley, government ones were open but attendance was thin due
to non-availability of regular transport facilities.
However, the strike failed to evoke a strong response
from suburban and rural areas, officials said.
Meanwhile, police had rubbished the allegations that 51
minor boys detained recently were political prisoners.
"They were arrested on the grounds of rape, sodomy,
theft, outraging modesty of women, eve teasing, drug peddling,
murder, kidnapping and other heinous social crimes," DIG
(Srinagar range) Abdul Gani Mir said here yesterday in
reaction to the shutdown called by Geelani following a report
by New Delhi-based Asian Centre for Human Rights.
Mir said of the 51 cases mentioned in the report, only 38
belong to Kashmir valley.
"Majority of these alleged minors are already bailed out,
which exposes the sinister designs of separatists (for calling
strike)...to malign the image of the state and police, these
Hurriyat leaders stoop low to portray rapists, thieves,
rogues, gamblers, drug peddlers, eve teasers and murderers as
political prisoners," he said.