Kashmir witnessed fresh spate of violence on Wednesday during which an 18-year-old youth was killed and dozen others injured, as separatist groups issued a fresh protest calendar — a week-long protest plan — asking people to march towards the Badami Bagh cantonment in Srinagar.
Unimpressed by Home Minister Rajnath Singh’s Kashmir outreach, the All Parties Hurriyat Conference issued a fresh protest calendar intensifying their pro-Azadi protest by calling for a march to the sensitive Army headquarters on 27 August.
This is for the first time, since the unrest began in Valley that has close to 70 people dead and thousands injured, that a united Hurriyat Conference has asked people to March towards 15 Corps of the Indian Army at Badami Bagh in Srinagar.
The protest calendar comes on a day when Union Home Minister Singh arrived on a two-day visit to the Valley for holding talks with different groups and political parties.
As a delegation of mainstream political parties was in a meeting with home minister, the separatist groups asked people to march towards the Badami Bagh cantonment in Srinagar on 27 August and ask the GoC to vacate the state.
Hurriyat leader Mirwaiz Umar Farooq said that issuing protest calendars was the only means of “resistance against the oppression is peaceful protest, as a war has been waged against Kashmir by a mighty force," according to him, .
“Yet individually and collectively we have to find ways and means of registering our protest, the protest calendar is our collective voice. Each one of us, especially our intelligentsia, artists, poets, writers, painters have to come forward and use their skills and creativity to express our pain and sentiment,” he said in a statement.
The united Hurriyat Conference led by Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Mohammad Yasin Malik has asked the people to write letters to government forces, including Army, BSF, CRFP, ITBP, CISF to vacate Jammu and Kashmir.
“Joint Resistance Leadership will march towards 15 corps of Indian Army at Badami Bagh, Srinagar and ask the GOC to vacate Jammu and Kashmir (sic)” a statement by the united faction of the Hurriyat conference, said.
This fresh ‘calendar’ has asked the protesters, for the first time, to march towards an Army installation, and that too the Badami Bagh cantonment in Srinagar. Indian Army killed a college professor allegedly during a night raid in Khrew area of Pampore in Pulwama district, recently. The Army’s northern command had regretted the incident and said it will launch an investigation into the incident.
Wednesday witnessed violence across Kashmir as an 18-year-old boy was killed after government forces fired pellets and burst teargas shells. Amir Gur Mir, a resident of Pinglina village of Pulwama district south of Kashmir, was killed after he sustained pellet injures in a clash between protesters and forces. With Mir's death, the toll in the ongoing Kashmir unrest has risen to 69, including two policemen.
Kashmir police said that on Wednesday, eight incidents of stone pelting were reported from Pulwama, Budgam, Srinagar, Baramulla, Kupwara and Bandipora.
The statement said during stone pelting near Degree College Pulwama, militants hiding in the mob fired and hurled two grenades on the deployment resulting in injuries to 17 police and CRPF personnel and some civilians.