Normal life affected in Valley due to strike by separatists

Normal life in Kashmir was affected today due to a strike called by separatists to protest the alleged unprovoked firing on civilians in south Kashmir's Pulwama district last week, even as curfew-like restrictions continued for the fourth day in the town.

Shops, business establishments, educational institutions, banks and courts remained closed in response to the strike call given by both factions of Hurriyat Conference and supported by other separatist groups.

Public transport remained mostly off the roads in Srinagar and other major towns of the Valley. However, private cars were seen plying on the roads.

Seven persons were injured when security forces opened fire at Pulwama chowk, 32 km from here, to make way for vehicles carrying four persons including two Army officers who were injured in a gunbattle with two Lashkar-e-Toiba militants in a nearby village on Friday.

Both the Army and police are claiming that their personnel did not fire at the people. The district administration has ordered a magisterial probe into the incident.

A senior official of the Pulwama district administration said restrictions were still in place as sporadic incidents of stone-pelting have continued in the town since Friday.

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