ISLAMABAD/HELD SRINAGAR: In their fresh acts of state terrorism on Saturday, the Indian troops martyred six Kashmiri youths in Ganderbal and Ramban districts of Occupied Kashmir.
During cordon and search operations, the troops martyred three youths in Naranag area of Ganderbal and three others in Batote area of Ramban district in Jammu region. Earlier, one Indian soldier was killed and another injured in an attack in Batote. The operations continued till last reports came in, Kashmir Media Service reports.
On the other hand, people came out in jubilation last night after Prime Minister Imran Khan’s speech in the UN General Assembly where he forcefully highlighted the suffering of Kashmiris due to continued lockdown and communication blackout in the territory.
Despite heavy presence of Indian troops, people at many places came out of their homes and celebrated with firecrackers and dance as soon as Imran Khan’s speech ended. Carrying Pakistani flags, they raised high-pitched pro-Pakistan, pro-freedom and anti-India slogans. The occupation authorities tightened restrictions in Srinagar on Saturday to prevent people from staging further demonstrations.
Normal life remained crippled on the 55th consecutive day on Saturday in the Kashmir valley, as shops, business establishments and educational institutions remained closed and public transport was off the roads.
The occupation authorities kept the communication means, including internet and mobile phones, suspended and TV channels shut in the Kashmir valley and Muslim areas of Jammu region. Shutdown was observed in Doda, Bhaderwah and Kishtwar against Indian occupation and repeal of special status of occupied Kashmir by the Modi government.
An officer of Indo-Tibetan Border Police committed suicide by shooting himself with his service rifle in Jammu city. This incident of suicide raised the number of such deaths among Indian troops and police personnel to 442 since January 2007.
Meanwhile, authorities tightened restrictions on people’s movements on Saturday to prevent possible protests following a speech by Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan. In an address to the United Nations General Assembly on Friday, Khan warned of a bloodbath once India lifts its restrictions in Kashmir, which have been in force since it revoked the region’s decades-old autonomy in August and detained thousands of people.
On Saturday, police vans fitted with speakers made public announcements in some parts of Srinagar about movement restrictions, while additional troops were deployed to prevent protests, according to officials and two witnesses. The troops also blocked access to the main business center of Srinagar with razor wire. “This was necessitated after protests across Srinagar city last night soon after Imran Khan’s speech,” said a police official, who declined to be identified. India’s crackdown as it revoked Kashmir’s special status was accompanied by severe restrictions on movement, as well as disconnection of telephone services. Though New Delhi has eased some of the movement curbs, no prominent detainees have been freed and mobile and internet connections remain suspended. In some areas, including Soura region near Srinagar which has witnessed protests in the past against India’s decision, people clashed with security forces by pelting stones Friday night, forcing police to use tear gas to disperse them, said the Indian official.
Meanwhile, former chief minister of Indian Occupied Kashmir Mehbooba Mufti appreciated Prime Minister Imran Khan’s historical speech at the UN General Assembly. In series of tweets, she said who would have thought that one fine day a Pakistani would warn the world about dangers of a fascist organization like the RSS. “Let us stand with Kashmir,” Mufti said, adding, “This inhuman siege imposed to cage and repress Kashmiris must end.”
Meanwhile former Member of UK Parliament George Galloway has also commended Prime Minister Imran Khan’s speech. In a tweet, he said Imran Khan played first class Captain’s innings at the UN General Assembly. “Well played, Sir,” the tweet said.