Kashmir On Fire As Protests Over Killing Of Kashmiri Leader Surprise

Indian Authorities

Kashmir on fire as protests over killing of Kashmiri leader surprise 
Indian authorities

WASHINGTON, (APP - UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News - 22th july, 2016) --Kashmir's fury at Indian rule is not something new, but the latest wave of protests has surprised authorities who did not expect the killing of a Kashmiri leader would trigger renewed struggle for separation from the Indian rule, a news report published in the US media said on Friday.

News about the ongoing protests in Kashmir continues to occupy space in the US media despite an hectic political season which has peaked with both Democratic and Republican parties nominating their candidates for the White House.

The US government has expressed concern over the killings in the occupied valley and protests have been held in major cities against the Indian brutalities and suppression of the valiant Kashmiri struggle.

The report traced the roots of the problem to the 'broken promise' of referendum that was made to the Kashmiri people shortly after the independence of the sub-continent in 1947. There have been several phases of freedom struggle since, the most serious one in 1989. The occupied valley is under fire since a curfew was imposed to quell widespread protests which broke out after Indian forces killed the young Kashmiri leader on July 9.

Dozens of people, including women and children have been killed and hundreds of others wounded by Indian soldiers and police. The report in the Washington Post explained how the life has come to a standstill in the held-valley where people have been virtually locked in their house due to daylong curfew.

Sheikh Naseer Ahmed, a resident of Srinagar, is getting married. He had arranged to feast 500 people and some 20 chefs had been hired to cook meal for the guests. That was done a few months ago.

All that has been cancelled. His home looks like anyone else's. There are no floral or light decorations, no hustle and bustle. Only close relatives are invited to the modest meal that is being prepared.

This is because shortly after dawn, police and paramilitary soldiers, in full riot gear and armed with automatic rifles, swiftly occupy the roads and streets. They set up checkpoints, and lay steel barricades and razor wire at all the entry and exit points.

"Shops are shuttered and public movement restricted. Getting food and medicine is a struggle. Dozens of feasts and celebrations have been canceled," the report said. "How can we feast and celebrate when so many people are being killed?" Ahmed was quoted as saying by the report.

The report said that such restrictions and lock downs are not new to the people of Kashmir which has witnessed several uprisings against Indian rule, especially in the past decade. While people are trying to manage to get their food, communication and information blackout has added to the hardships.

According to the report, authorities have suspended mobile phone services and internet services and several publications have been banned. The report said that "every new killing has further enraged residents, sparking more protests and clashes."