Yasin Malik’s Verdict | Protesters clash with police, markets remain closed in Srinagar
Most shops in Srinagar’s main shopping center and its adjoining markets remained closed on Wednesday as Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front leader Yasin Malik was sentenced to life imprisonment in a financing of terrorism by a court in New Delhi. The shutdown was observed in the absence of any band appeals by the separatists.
Security forces have been deployed in large numbers to unstable pockets of the city “to ward off any protests”. Markets also remained closed in large parts of the old city, including Hawal, Nowhatta, Zaina Kadal and Safa Kadal.
Protesters, including women, gathered at Malik’s residence at Maisuma in Srinagar. Malik’s sister was seen reciting the Quran ahead of the verdict.
Protesters waved pro-Malik and pro-freedom slogans and many clashed with security forces. The police used smoke shells to disperse the crowd.
Malik’s wife, Mushaal Hussein Mullick, who is in Pakistan, said he faced “trumped up” charges.
“The fear of losing power over the people of Kashmir drives the Indian government to adopt such harsh positions which have no legal basis. Indian BJP wants to punish my husband to increase Modi’s vote bank and make J&K people leaderless. India must end these war crimes and this policy of hate and intolerance,” Ms Malik said in a tweet.
Hurriyat’s incarcerated president, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, said in a statement: “Since 1994, Malik has sought peaceful and democratic means of conflict resolution. Malik actively participated in all negotiations held on Kashmir after 2000 under various regimes in New Delhi and Islamabad. Yet he has been arrested and has now been convicted in fabricated cases under draconian laws. In fact, he is being punished for his political beliefs on the J&K dispute and for representing the feelings of his people.