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Kashmir under curfew; water, power supply hit

By Mukhtar Ahmad
Last updated on: July 08, 2010 16:26 IST

More companies of the Central Reserve Police Force were rushed to Srinagar on Thursday to reinforce the security bandobast in the valley where curfew was imposed on Wednesday.
The army conducted flag marches in sensitive areas of the capital on Thursday afternoon to assist the civil administration in the enforcement of the curfew imposed in the wee hours of Wednesday.
The army was called in after large-scale violence claimed four lives on Tuesday.
The trouble on Tuesday erupted in the Gangbugh area of the city after the body of a teenager was fished out from a stream, with the locals alleging he had been forcibly drowned by the security forces while chasing stone pelters.
The violence that followed the recovery of the body left three persons including a woman dead and over 70 injured.
Union Home Secretary G K Pillai, who returned to New Delhi on Thursday morning, reviewed the overall situation with Chief Minister Omar Abdullah and senior civil, police and paramilitary officers.
A senior police officer said more companies of the CRPF were on their way to Kashmir to strength the security apparatus.
The state authorities have cancelled all the curfew passes including those issued to the journalists. Due to the cancellations, even local newspapers didn't hit the stands today morning.
The cancellation of the curfew passes has also hit essential services including power, water supply and hospitals.
Srinagar residents are facing acute shortages of essential commodities due to continued curfew restrictions.
Meanwhile, the state police arrested the president of the Kashmir Bar Association Mian Abdul Quyoom under the harsh Public Safety Act on Wednesday.
In a sharp reaction to the deployment of the army, chairman of the moderate All Parties Hurriyat Conference Mirwaiz Moulvi Umar Farooq said that 'military measures will in no way be able to break the will and resolve of the people as has been proved beyond doubt time and again in the last six decades'.

"Unfortunately, the army has always been India's first and last resort in handling Kashmir," the Mirwaiz said in a statement.

Mukhtar Ahmad in Srinagar