Srinagar: Normal life was today disrupted in Lal Chowk and adjoining areas in the heart of Srinagar as JKLF chairman Mohammad Yasin Malik along with his supporters staged a sit-in to protest alleged highhandedness of police.
Malik, who is on an indefinite hunger strike, was among hundreds of separatist leaders and activists arrested by police in the run up to the five-phased Assembly polls. He was released last night after over two-month-long detention.
The JKLF chairman went on an indefinite hunger strike in custody three days ago against alleged highhandedness of police in his Maisuma locality, which also houses the headquarters of JKLF.
Soon after his release last night, Malik along with his dozens of activists and supporters staged a sit-in at Budshah Chowk to press for release of the arrested youth and alleged harassment of the residents.
Malik spent the chilly winter night in a tent at the Budshah Chowk and was joined by more supporters this morning, resulting in a massive traffic jam in the city as authorities closed the busy road for vehicular traffic.
Business activities also came to a halt in Budshah Chowk and adjoining areas, including Lal Chowk and Residency Road, due to the tense situation following the sit-in.
Police and paramilitary forces have been deployed in strength to maintain law and order, officials said.
“Malik was forced to sit on an indefinite hunger strike against continuing police oppression, arrests, nocturnal raids and harassment of the residents of Maisuma and adjacent areas,” a JKLF spokesman said.
The spokesman alleged that police has virtually laid a tight siege around Maisuma for the last 10 days and were conducting nocturnal raids and harassing local residents.
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