Joint Hurriyat forum appeals protests in IOK » Kashmir Media Service

Strict curfew, communication blockade continue

Srinagar, August 16 (KMS): In occupied Kashmir, Joint Hurriyat Forum in coordination with civil society and the associations of lawyers, journalists, traders, transporters and employees have appealed the Kashmiri nation, the people of the Kashmir Valley, Jammu and Kargil to come out on streets and raise their voice for their inalienable right to self-determination.

In a statement issued in Srinagar, the Forum urged the people to defy curfew and other restrictions and protest against the Indian nefarious design to change the special status of Jammu and Kashmir and its bifurcation. The statement pointed out that the call of protests was made in response to the wishes of the Kashmiri people. The Hurriyat Forum said the Kashmiri nation will never accept the Hindutva based machinations and will not allow Hindu fundamentalists to enter their motherland. It maintained that the sacrifices of the Kashmiri martyrs will not be betrayed and the Kashmiri people will show their strength in saving their mothers, sisters and daughters from the onslaught of the Hindu zealots. The Joint Hurriyat Forum appealed to the people to defy curfew and restrictions. It maintained that Jammu and Kashmir is the land of Kashmiris who will decide their future themselves. The statement said, come what may, the people of Kashmir will never accept Indian occupation.

Meanwhile, the authorities continued to impose strict curfew and other restrictions across the Kashmir valley on the 12th consecutive day, today, to prevent people from holding demonstrations against India’s move of abrogating Article 370 and changing the special status of the territory. Thousands of Indian troops have been deployed in every nook and corner of the valley to keep the masses indoor. Amid continued communication blockade, the Kashmir valley remains cut off from the external world due to suspension of Internet services and telephone links. Local newspapers have failed to update their online editions during all this period and majority of them could not hit the stands due to curfew and other restrictions. Due to severe blockade, a famine-like situation is emerging as people are facing severe shortage of essential commodities including baby food and life-saving medicines and the occupied territory represents a humanitarian catastrophe.

Hundreds of Hurriyat leaders and activists as well as pro-India politicians have been put under house arrest or detained. There is no further space in jails and police stations and over 1000 political workers are presently lodged in makeshift detention centres in Srinagar, Baramulla and Gurez. The occupation authorities are hiring private properties across the valley to accommodate those taken into custody.

Complete shutdown was observed in Kargil, today, against the repeal of the special status of occupied Kashmir, clamp down in the valley and arrest of political leaders. Indian troops arrested a 26-year-old journalist, Irfan Amin Malik, after barging into his house during a midnight raid in Tral area of Pulwama.

Former puppet Chief Minister, Mehbooba Mufti’s daughter, Iltija Javed in a letter to the Indian Home Minister, Amit Shah, said the Kashmiris have been caged like animals and deprived of basic human rights. Former Jawaharlal Nehru University student leader and noted Kashmiri social activist, Shehla Rasheed Shora, in a post on a social networking site wrote that all of occupied Kashmir is a jail right now – an open-air prison – and the authorities are even jailing children of class seven.

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