Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front Chairman Mohammad Yasin Malik and 15 activists were detained as the separatist group tried to take out a march here to protest the killing of a youth by Army in Bandipora district of north Kashmir on Tuesday.
Malik and 15 other JKLF activists including senior Vice Chairman Bashir Ahmad Bhat, Shakeel Ahmad Bakshi and Noor Mohammad Kalwal were taken into preventive custody by police at Budshah Chowk in the heart of the city while they were leading a march, official sources said.
The JKLF had given a call for a march from its Maisuma headquarters to the local office of UN Military Observers Group at Sonawar to submit a memorandum against the killing of Hilal Ahmad Dar, who fell to the bullets of the troops.
Although Malik and other prominent separatist leaders including chairmen of both factions of Hurriyat Conference -Syed Ali Sah Geelani and Mirwaiz Umer Farooq - have been placed under house arrest, supporters of JKLF broke the police cordon around the house of their leader and took him out to lead the procession, the sources said.
As the procession reached nearby Budshah Chowk, police swung into action and took Malik and 15 other JKLF leaders and activists into preventive custody for defying prohibitory orders, they said.
Police used batons to chase away other processionists, leading to brief clashes. However, none was hurt. Strongly condemning the police action, JKLF spokesman Altaf Khan said the group had planned to submit a memorandum to the United Nations to seek world attention towards the unresolved Kashmir issue and the 'grave human rights violations' being perpetrated on the people of the state.
"The killing of Dar is a glaring example of how an innocent is being killed by Army with impunity," he said.
Meanwhile, normal life remained disrupted in Bandipora town of north Kashmir for the third day on Friday in protest against the killing of Dar, a local youth.