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Curfew orders defied; protesters cane-charged

Security forces lobbed tear gas shells and cane-charged protesters who defied curfew orders and took to streets in Beerwah town of Budgam district.

india Updated: Aug 24, 2008 15:46 IST

Security forces lobbed tear gas shells and cane-charged protesters who defied curfew orders and took to streets in Beerwah town of Budgam district on Sunday morning.

Men, women and children trooped onto streets and hurled stones at personnel forcing them to resort to cane-charging. However, agitators refused to disperse prompting security forces to lob tear gas shells, sources said.

Agitated over the imposition of indefinite curfew in all the ten districts of the valley since 4 am ahead of separatists rally to Lal Chowk tomorrow, people at several places defied curfew.

Groups of people at Khanyar, Nowhatta, Gojwara, Jamia Masjid in interior city and in uptown areas including Maisuma, Nowgam, Natipora, Rambagh assembled in mosques and raised slogans against the Central and state governments.

Meanwhile, the Coordination Committee of Separatists said tomorrow's march to Lal Chowk would take place as planned. "Our programme 'Lal Chowk Chalo' on Monday stands", Committee spokesman Masrat Alam told PTI.

The Committee has called upon people to stage peaceful demonstrations in the evening.

Alam and two other leaders including Shabir Ahmed Shah and Nayeem Ahmed Khan evaded arrest as they were not present at their houses when security forces conducted raids.

Holding that the curfew was imposed as a precautionary measure, a government spokesman said steps were taken as some of the leaders face threat from "vested interests."