Srinagar: The separatist sponsored strike
against the alleged illegal occupation of land by troops in
Jammu and Kashmir disrupted normal life in Anantnag today.
Shops and business establishments in most parts of the
district remained closed in response to the strike call given
by hardline faction of Hurriyat Conference headed by Syed Ali
Shah Geelani to press for withdrawal of troops from the state.
Hurriyat had kick started a campaign from Shopian
district of South Kashmir on October 26 against the alleged
illegal occupation of thousands of hectares of land by troops
in the state and since then had been calling for weekly
strikes on Fridays to mobilise public support for its demand
for withdrawal of troops.
The strike was peaceful although processions in support
of the demand were taken out after Friday prayers in the town
in support of the demand.
In the absence of Geelani, who is undergoing treatment
in New Delhi for an eye ailment, senior leader Peer Saifullah
addressed the gathering and vowed to continue the campaign
till "last of the Indian trooper" leaves Kashmir.
Meanwhile, a clash took place between groups of youth
and police at Nowhatta and nearby Gojwara in the vicinity of
Jamia Masjid in downtown Srinagar after Friday prayers.
However, none was hurt in the clashes which broke out
when the youth, shouting pro-freedom slogans, tried to march
on the road and indulged in stone-pelting when police
intervened. Police fired a few teargas shells and used batons
to disperse the mobs.