Shutdown, clashes enter seventh day in India-controlled Kashmir
The protests and clashes continued in Muslim majority areas of India- controlled Kashmir for the seventh consecutive day Sunday, officials and eyewitness said, accordng to Xinhua.
The clashes broke out after Asiya Andrabi, leader of the Dukhatran-e-Millat (Daughters of Muslim Community), defied the police restrictions to lead a women's march to Iddgah grounds in Srinagar, the region's summer capital.
Police fired tear smoke shells and baton charged the protesters to hamper the march. At least 20 protesters, including six women, were injured in the clashes, said hospital sources.
Authorities had earlier imposed severe restrictions and closed roads leading to the Iddgah grounds.
Andrabi called on local women to march to the Iddgah grounds to protest the mysterious death of two women in the region one week ago.
Several separatist leaders including Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Shabir Ahmad Shah and others have been arrested by the police and taken to some unknown destination.
The separatist leaders were supposed to lead a march to Shopian, a town 50 kilometers south of Srinagar where the two women died one week ago, on Monday
"The leaders have been arrested and taken into preventive detention in order to prevent them from leading a march tomorrow," said a police official on the condition of anonymity.
Meanwhile, several newspapers published from the region Sunday reported that forensic report has confirmed that two women found dead in Shopian had been raped before being murdered.
Suspecting that Indian troopers could have been involved, local people have been protesting since last Monday seeking identification of the culprits behind the death of the two women.