Violent clashes broke out in parts of Kashmir valley on Friday, immediately after Eid prayers ended in the morning, with angry protestors condemning the authorities' decision to bar nearly six top separatist leaders from attending the congregational prayers.
A devotee raised pro-independence slogans inside the shrine at Hazratbal, just metres away from chief minister Omar Abdullah, who had gone there along with other ruling party leaders to say his prayers. Security agencies later whisked away the protestor. In Srinagar's old city locality, a major congregation was held at Eidgah, attended by thousands of devotees.
Mooderate Hurriyat chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq was expected to attend the prayers there. However, fearing a law and order problem, the authorities placed him under house arrest.
"It is a trampling of religious rights. All Muslim countries should take note of it," said the Mirwaiz, who also addressed his supporters telephonically.
His supporters started pelting stones at the EIdgah, forcing the security forces to use tear gas to disperse the mob. Several devotees were injured in the incident.
The protesters alleged that the security forces had fired pellets at a close range, injuring the protesters, including a woman bystander. The battle continued for almost the entire day.
Apart from Mirwaiz, hardline Hurriyat chairman Syed Ali Shah Geelani and JKLF chief Yasin Malik were placed under house arrest. There were reports of minor clashes from Geelani's native place Sopore, 55 km north of Srinagar. The police did not confirm the number of injured civilians.