Separatist Shutdown Cripples Life In Srinagar13 April 2010
Times of India
Srinagar: Life in Srinagar ground to a halt on Tuesday in response to a shutdown called by the hardline faction of Jammu and Kashmir's Hurriyat Conference against the conviction of six Kashmiris in New Delhi's Lajpat Nagar bombing case. Public transport was off the roads and shops, educational institutions, banks and other business establishments were closed as the shutdown called by hardline separatist leader Syed Ali Geelani came into effect. The shutdown was called to protest the conviction of six Kashmiris, including Farida Dar, chairperson of the separatist mass movement party, by a Delhi court in the 1996 Lajpat Nagar case. Thirteen people were killed in the blast that took place on the evening of May 2, 1996 in the area's busy Central Market in south Delhi. Apprehending breach of peace by separatists, authorities mounted vigil in the Old City areas where heavy deployment of police and paramilitary Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) has been made. 'We have reports that some anti-social elements might try to create a law and order situation in the Old City areas. That is why we have taken preventive measures.' 'There are no restrictions in place anywhere in the city though in sensitive areas we are closely monitoring the situation. Section 144 of the penal code (prohibiting the gathering of more than five people) is in force. Nobody will be allowed to violate it,' said Javaid Riyaz, the senior superintendent of police (Srinagar). The shutdown comes on a day striking government employees had said schools across the state would resume and teachers would render voluntary services from 8.30 a.m. to 12.30 pm. However, schools in Srinagar, the summer capital, continued to be closed because no public transport was available.