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Kashmiris smash curfew to offer Friday prayers


SRINAGAR– Following India’s decision to end special status of Occupied Kashmir by abrogating Article 370 and 35A and after being confined to their homes for days, the people of the occupied Kashmir broke curfew and offered Friday prayers.

Indian occupied Kashmir remained cut off from the outside world due to the communication blockade imposed by India while curfew and other restrictions continued on the 5th consecutive day on Friday.

The Indian government had imposed curfew and other restrictions in occupied Kashmir ahead of announcement on Monday to repeal Article 370 of the Indian Constitution that granted special status to Jammu and Kashmir.

The occupation authorities have deployed thousands of Indian troops, paramilitary and police personnel in every nook and corner of the occupied territory to prevent demonstrations against the illegal move of the Indian government.

Several people were injured, today, when Indian troops used brute force against protesters in Sopore town. Juma prayers could not be held at Srinagar’s historic Jamia Masjid and several other mosques due to restrictions.

The occupied territory remains cut off from rest of the world due to the communication blackout imposed by the Indian government by snapping television, telephone and internet links. Local newspaper could not hit the stands for the past five days while their online editions also could not be updated since the night of 4th August. The people of the territory are suffering immensely due to the shortage of essential commodities, baby food and life saving drugs.

Almost all Hurriyat leaders, including Syed Ali Gilani and Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, have been put under house arrest or in jails. Seventy of the arrested Hurriyat leaders and activists have been shifted from Srinagar to a jail in Agra city of the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh. Mian Abdul Qayoom, President of the High Court Bar Association, and Mubin Shah, an office-bearer of Kashmir Chamber of Commerce are among those shifted outside the Kashmir valley. Over 560 political leaders and workers including even pro-India politicians like Farooq Abdullah, Omar Abdullah, Mehbooba Mufti and Sajjad Lone, have been detained.

On the other hand, clashes erupted in Kargil between occupation forces and Kashmiris against revoking Valley’s special status.

The citizens demanded the puppet authorities to restore Kashmir’s special status.

Meanwhile, students and professionals hailing from IOK staged a demonstration at Jantar Mantar Road in Delhi, today, to protest against the scrapping of Article 370. Covering their mouths with black ribbons, they demanded end of communication blockade and lifting of restrictions in the territory.

The Jammu and Kashmir Peoples Movement chairman, Mir Shahid Saleem, in a statement issued in Jammu thanked the government and people of Pakistan for standing in solidarity with the oppressed people of Kashmir at a time when India had robbed them of their status, identity and culture.