Srinagar: Top separatist leaders were
put under house arrest and restrictions have been imposed in
several areas here in Jammu and Kashmir to thwart their plans
of holding rallies on Martyrs` Day Wednesday.
Chairmen of rival factions of Hurriyat Conference Syed
Ali Shah Geelani and Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, Shabir Ahmad Shah,
Nayeem Ahmad Khan, Professor Abdul Gani Bhat and Bilal Gani
Lone were put under house arrest late last evening, officials
Geelani had called for a march to Naqshband Sahib
graveyard in Khanyar area of the city where the martyrs of
1931 were buried.
The Mirwaiz faction had announced that it will take
out a "peaceful rally" from Jamia Masjid to the Martyrs`
graveyard to pay homage to the heroes of Kashmir`s
More than 22 men were shot dead by the soldiers of
Kashmir`s Dogra ruler on July 13, 1931 after the people of
Kashmir rose against the autocratic rule of the Maharaja and
demanded their rights.
Chief Minister Omar Abdullah and other National
Conference leaders paid tributes to the martyrs this morning
by laying floral wreaths and offering prayers.
Omar and his entourage arrived at the venue amidst
tight security. Although some National Conference workers
living in the vicinity of the martyrs` graveyard had assembled
there, the Chief Minister did not address them.
Curfew-like situation prevailed in downtown Srinagar
as authorities imposed Section 144 CrPC which bans assembly of
four or more persons at any place without prior permission.
The restrictions on movement of people were imposed in
the police station areas of Nowhatta, Khanyar, Rainawari,
Safakadal and Maharajgunj to prevent any illegal gathering of
people, the officials said.
They said so far there were no report of any untoward
incident from anywhere in the city.
Meanwhile, normal life was affected due to the strike
called by moderate faction of Hurriyat Conference. Shops and
business establishments remained closed in the entire city.
The effect of strike was accentuated by the
restrictions imposed by the authorities and on account of