Kashmir shuts against teacher’s custodial killing

Normal life came to a grinding halt in Valley on Wednesday due to shutdown called by the Joint Resistance Leadership (JRL) against the custodial killing of a school teacher from south Kashmir’s Awantipora town.
The authorities imposed mild restrictions in parts of downtown Srinagar to foil protests and maintain law and order.

The contingents of forces were deployed in downtown areas to maintain tight vigil and foil any attempts by youth to stage protests against the custodial killing of 28-year-old teacher Rizwan Asad Pandit. The force personnel had laid coils of concertina wire on the roads to restrict movement of the people.

However, people and private cars were allowed to move and no untoward incident was reported during the day.
The CRPF men were also deployed in strength around Ghanta Ghar in city centre Lal Chowk, where all shops and business establishments remained closed.

The shops and business establishments in Srinagar and other parts of the Valley remained closed while public transport was off the roads.
The shutdown was called by JRL to protest custodial killing of a private school teacher, Rizwan Asad Pandith from Awantipora in Pulwama.

Rizwan, 28, was killed during then intervening night of 18 and 19 March in police custody in Srinagar.
Police had detained him in connection with the investigation of a militancy case on last Sunday.
Before his custodial killing, Rizwan, a Post-Graduate in Chemistry and B.ed degree holder, worked as a principal at a local private school Awantipora.
The custodial killing triggered outrage and condemnations from mainstream and separatist political parties, prompting the administration to order magisterial probe to ascertain the circumstances of the incident. Police is also conducting a separate investigation into the incident.
Authorities chocked internet service on mobile phones from 4G to 2G in Srinagar and Budgam in central Kashmir while the mobile internet service remained suspended in south Kashmir parts.
Railway authorities also suspended train service in the Valley for security reasons.
“Trains didn’t chug between Baramulla and Banihal in view of the strike called by separatists,” a Railway official said.