The authorities clamped down on several separatists groups on Friday and detained around a dozen leaders apparently to scuttle any major poll boycott campaign.
Several separatist groups - which includes hardline Hurriyat, a faction of moderate Hurriyat and JKLF - alleged that the police swooped on them and arrested dozens.
“A large contingent of the police cordoned JKLF chief Yasin Malik’s residence late last night and placed him under house arrest,” said a JKLF spokesperson.
The JKLF claimed the authorities did not allow Malik to attend Friday prayers.
“We were scheduled to visit various areas of south Kashmir in connection with election boycott campaign, but a large contingent of police intercepted us,” alleged a spokesperson of a faction of the moderate Hurriyat.
“The government, on one hand, terms election boycott campaigns democratic, but on the other hand is restricting every movement of its political opponents,” said the spokesperson.
All senior leaders of hardline Hurriyat, led by Syed Ali Shah Geelani, were also either detained or put under house arrest.
However, JKLF supporters carried out an anti-election campaign in several districts of north and south Kashmir. The JKLF spokesperson said its workers asked people to keep away from elections.
JKLF leaders and activists addressed people in many mosques and distributed pamphlets among the devotees.
“Objective of elections organised by India and held under Indian Constitution is to prolong the slavery of Kashmiris,” these leaders told the devotes who attended mosques for Friday prayers.
“These elections gave us black laws like AFSPA, TADA, POTA. These produced the oppression of task force, custodial killings and disappearances, unmarked graves and unnamed graveyards,” alleged JKLF supporters.