Police raids houses of JRL, Malik goes underground ahead of protests against abrogation of Article 35-A

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Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) Yasin Malik;s house was raided by police in order to arrest him. Malik however was not present and had gone underground to evade arrest in view of shutdown called against “planned abrogation” of Article 35-A.

Meanwhile, Hurriyat (G) and Hurriyat (M) chairmen, Syed Ali Geelani and Mirwaiz Umar Farooq have been placed under house arrest.

Hurriyat (M) leader and PPP chairman Hilal Ahmad War has also been placed under house arrest at his Maisuma residence.

A complete shutdown is being observed on Sunday across Kashmir following a shutdown call by the Joint Resistance Leadership (JRL) to protest against attempts to abrogate of Article 35 A. All business establishments, government, and private offices are closed, while transport remained off the roads.

Earlier, JRL had called for a shutdown in Jammu and Kashmir on August 5 and 6 to register their total disapproval and resistance to the “politically motivated” move of abrogation of Article 35-A.

Reports said that contingents of paramilitary forces have been deployed at various sensitive points in region’s capital, particularly old city areas.

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Meanwhile, train services have been suspended across Kashmir, keeping in view of the shutdown call. “We have suspended all trains between Srinagar-Budgam-in central Kashmir to Baramulla in north Kashmir today,” a railway official said.

In Jammu too, the call was responded to.

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Protests were held amid a complete shutdown in Ramban district of Jammu against attempt to abrogate Article 35-A, which bars outsiders from buying land in the state.

Shutdown is also being observed in Banihal, Khari and Gool areas of the district. Shops and other commercial establishments are closed while traffic is off the roads.

Markets in Banihal on the highway and in adjoining villages of Nowgam, Tethar, Chareel Kaskoot and Dooligam are also closed.

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In Gool, scores of men held a protest against any move to tinker with the constitutional provision.

People across the political and regional divide have come together to protest against attempts to revoke Article 35-A of the Indian Constitution which empowers the Jammu and Kashmir state’s legislature to define “permanent residents” of the state and provide special rights and privileges to those permanent residents.

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On Friday, PDP President and former Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti said that fiddling with the State’s special status would have ‘catastrophic ramifications’ for the entire country.

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