Srinagar, Feb 27 : The shutdown called by Joint Resistance Leadership against whole resistance leadership, a widespread spree of arrests and continued threats to tinker with Articles 35A and 370 on Wednesday affected normal life across the Kashmir Valley.
Shops and other business establishments were closed while public transport was mainly off the roads, reports reaching said.
In Srinagar city and other district towns in the Valley, reports and residents said, there was a deployment of government forces at several places to prevent protests.
The strike was called by the JRL comprising both factions of Hurriyat Conference led by Syed Ali Shah Geelani, and Mirwaiz Umar Farooq respectively besides JKLF headed by Mohammad Yasin Malik.
The JRL in a statement issued yesterday said: “Kashmir has not, cannot and will never budge before this state-sponsored terror and watch all this mutely. Nation of Kashmir will observe complete and comprehensive shutdown against these colonial acts on 27 and 28 February 2019.”
While strongly condemning the “show of dictatorial crackdown” against the people of Jammu Kashmir, JRL said that sleuths of NIA carried raids the residences of Mirwaiz Muhammad Umar Farooq, Muhammad Yasin Malik, Muhammad Ashraf Sehrai, incarcerated Shabir Ahmad Shah, incarcerated Masarat Aalam Bhat, Syed Naseem Geelani son of Syed Ali Geelani, Zaffar Akbar Butt and others.
The leadership had said that a war has been unleashed against the people of Kashmir “to satisfy manipulated collective conscience” of Indian people who are being provoked through “biased” media channels and “raucous” debates by Indian leaders.
“Barging into privacy of homes without a knock, vandalizing houses in the name of search and intimidating families can only be termed as worst form of hounding by NIA and police who have today descended to lowest of ethics and morality in Kashmir,” JRL had said adding that “this act of revenge is aimed at providing a legal cover to spree of arrests and break the will, valor and courage of the people of Jammu Kashmir who are striving for a just and sacred cause”.
Also, as many as five petitions have been filed in the Supreme Court against Article 35A, with the lead case filed in 2014 by a little known Delhi-based NGO, ‘We The Citizens’.
Besides these cases, a Special Leave Petition is also pending disposal before the top court that was filed after Delhi High Court dismissed a plea against Article 370.