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Curfew clamped in Kashmir Valley

September 12, 2010 14:40 IST

Indefinite curfew was clamped on Sunday in Srinagar and six other towns of Kashmir Valley in view of several incidents of arson and violence on Saturday, official sources said.

The decision to clamp curfew in the city and other parts of the Valley was taken after a high-level meeting of civil and security forces officials in Srinagar on Saturday night, the sources said. Besides the entire Srinagar city district, curfew was also imposed in south Kashmir towns of Anantnag, Bijbehara, Pulwama, Kakapora and Sopore and Baramulla towns in north Kashmir, the sources said.

Thousands of police and paramilitary CRPF personnel have been deployed in curfew bound areas to maintain law and order, they said. Rampaging mobs set on fire some public properties, including the Crime Branch office and a police guard post in Hazratbal shrine as violence marred Eid-ul-Fitr celebrations in Srinagar city.

Police blamed activists of hard line faction of Hurriyat Conference led by Syed Ali Shah Geelani and Muslim league headed by underground separatist leader Masrat Alam Bhat for the violence as part of a pre-planned conspiracy to disrupt Eid celebrations.

The government also accused moderate Hurriyat Chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq of inciting people by leading a protest rally to Lal Chowk. Soon after a protest rally organised by separatist leaders at Lal Chowk, a group of youth barged into the office of Chief Engineer, Power Development Department near Exhibition Crossing in Srinagar and set it on fire. The adjacent building housing the Crime Branch office was also engulfed in flames within no time and the blaze spread rapidly as the building is mostly made of wood.

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