Thousands protest Indian rule in Kashmir

Reuters North American News Service

Sep 19, 2008 05:37 EST

SRINAGAR, India, Sept 19 (Reuters) – Shouting anti-India slogans, thousands of Muslims marched in Kashmir’s main city on Friday, part of an ongoing campaign against New Delhi’s rule that has become an embarrassment for the Indian government.

The current round of protests are some the biggest since a separatist revolt broke out in the disputed Himalayan region in 1989, a conflict that has killed thousands of people.

Thousand of policemen and soldiers were deployed across the region ahead of protests called by Muslim separatists after Friday prayers.

“Go India go, we want freedom,” shouted protesters led by separatist leader Yasin Malik in Srinagar, Kashmir’s summer capital.

At least 37 protesters have been killed by government forces since last month in the Muslim-majority Kashmir Valley. More than 1,000 people have been injured.

The protests were sparked by a government decision to grant land to build shelters for Hindu pilgrims travelling to Kashmir, one of the world’s most militarised regions.

Shops, businesses and schools were closed on Friday and streets in the strife-torn region wore a deserted look. Only security patrols were on the roads.

“I appeal to people to protest peacefully,” Malik told the protesters, many of them carrying his picture.

The protests come at a time when violence involving Indian troops and separatist guerrillas has declined significantly after India and Pakistan, who claim the region in full and have gone to war over it, began a slow-moving peace process in 2004.

But people are still killed in shootouts and occasional explosions. (Reporting by Sheikh Mushtaq; Editing by Krittivas Mukherjee and Sanjeev Miglani)

(For the latest Reuters news on India see:, for blogs see

Source: Reuters North American News Service

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: