Other States

J&K flood anniversary: Govt foils protest march

CRPF personnel stand guard infront of closed shops in Srinagar on Monday, in order to prevent a rally of traders against the alleged apathy of the Centeral and State Governments in rehabilitating the flood affected people of Jammu and Kashmir. Photo: Nissar Ahmad

CRPF personnel stand guard infront of closed shops in Srinagar on Monday, in order to prevent a rally of traders against the alleged apathy of the Centeral and State Governments in rehabilitating the flood affected people of Jammu and Kashmir. Photo: Nissar Ahmad  

more-in

Omar Abdullah says 'Mufti a dictator'

Amid complete shutdown, the Jammu and Kashmir government on Monday clamped down on separatist and trade bodies’ leaders to foil a protest march against the government’s “poor rehabilitation” of sufferers of the floods that hit the Valley last year.

Around a dozen separatists and traders were detained by the government to stop them from assembling at the city centre Lal Chowk, worst hit in the September 2014 floods.

Former chief minister and opposition National Conference (NC) working president Omar Abdullah accused Chief Minister Mufti Muhammad Sayeed of being a “dictator”.

“All these people wanted to do was register their dissatisfaction at the absence of any meaningful flood relief. Shame on Mufti the Dictator (sic),” wrote Mr. Abdullah on Twitter.

“If Mufti Sb was so sure people were going to celebrate as his Govt has planned today he wouldn't have ordered these arrests. #Dictator (sic),” he added.

The government began the clampdown since Sunday evening with many top rung separatists, including JKLF chairman Yasin Malik and Hurriyat faction chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq placed under house arrest.

Another Hurriyat faction chairman Syed Ali Shah is already under house arrest and his close aides, Mohammad Ashraf Sehrai, Raja Mehraj-u-Din and Ayaz Akbar, were also arrested.

“Monday morning, a large contingent of police reached at the Mirwaiz’s residence and informed him about his house detention. The police also raided the houses of senior leaders Javaid Ahmad Mir, Engnieer Hilal Ahmad War, Mushtaq Ahmad Sofi. Hurriyat media advisor Shahid-ul-Islam was also placed under house detention on Sunday late night,” said the Mirwaiz’s spokesman in an e-mailed statement.



Top leaders of the Kashmir Economic Alliance, a conglomerate of traders and business houses that called for a shutdown, were detained when they tried to reach the protest venue on Monday. Among those detained were KEA top leaders Yasin Khan and Showkat Chowdhury.

The arrests came after the government denied permission for the protest assembly at Lal Chowk and suggested a different venue.



Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industries president Sheikh Ashiq condemned the state government’s action against traders.



“The detention of trader bodies’ leaders was unwarranted. To call for a shutdown and peaceful protest was a very democratic way to express our anger and helplessness over the government’s failure to resurrect Kashmir economy and reach out to sufferers. The police action is condemnable,” Mr. Ashiq told The Hindu.



The shutdown call of traders was supported by separatist as well as mainstream parties, including the National Conference.

The traders were planning a protest march against the state and the Centre for failing to fulfil promises made after the floods. Against Rs 44,000 crore proposal submitted by the state government, the Centre has so far released around 1600 crore for relief and rehabilitation.

Why you should pay for quality journalism - Click to know more

Recommended for you
This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

Printable version | Jan 26, 2020 1:15:57 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/jk-flood-anniversary-govt-foils-protest-march/article7624694.ece

Next Story