Ahead of the arrival of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh here, independent MLA Sheikh Abdul Rashid was on Monday placed under house arrest when he, along with his supporters, defied prohibitory orders and tried to stage a dharna to protest the killing of three youths in the Machhil fake encounter.
Official sources said Mr. Rashid and his supporters tried to take out a procession towards Lal Chowk in the heart of the city to stage a sit in but police and paramilitary forces prevented them.
As Mr. Rashid and his supporters tried to break the police cordon, law enforcing agencies placed Rashid under house arrest and detained nearly 150 of his supporters, they said.
Mr. Rashid had sought permission from the District Magistrate, Srinagar, for holding a “peaceful” protest demonstration in Lal Chowk or Raj Bhavan against the alleged “murder of three youths of Nadihal and unabated human rights violations“.
The district magistrate had declined permission, saying prohibitory orders were in force in the city.
However, Mr. Rashid said he will go ahead with the dharna as he wanted to draw the attention of the Prime Minister towards the killing of three innocent youths of Nadihal.
“We strongly condemn the police action. It is nothing but sham democracy”, he said.
The Prime Minister will visit Kashmir on Monday to take forward his peace initiative in the state and is expected to renew his offer for talks with separatists.
Mr. Rashid had also lodged a complaint with the state human rights commission (SHRC) on alleged forced labour following which the state police in its report to SHRC had admitted that people of Mawer in Langate constituency were used as forced labour by the army for 13 years without any remuneration.
“Now that my complaint has been proved, the prime minister should apologise to the people and compensate them”, Mr. Rashid said.
Mr. Rashid in a separate complaint with SHRC had sought arrest and punishment of armymen allegedly responsible for the fake encounter in which three youths of Nadihal area were killed on April 30.
An Army Major has been suspended and a Colonel removed from his command for their alleged involvement in the killing.