The death of a local youth in Mumbai under mysterious circumstances sparked off violent protests in parts of Srinagar on Sunday.Trouble started when the body of Parvez Ahmad Teli, a resident of Srinagar's Kalamdan Pora, reached his native colony in the morning.
Hundreds of locals took to the streets and hurled stones at the security forces. Police resorted to teargas shelling to bring the situation under control.
Teli, a businessman, had reportedly gone missing on July 7 near the Churchgate area in Mumbai. The relatives claim he went out to buy something in the night and did not return.
The Mumbai police found Teli's body on July 9. "We are in touch with the police in Mumbai to ascertain the cause of death," Central Kashmir's deputy inspector general of police Afhad-ul-Mujtaba said.
The protesters, who burnt tyres and stopped traffic in parts of the old city, alleged that Teli was killed "for being a Kashmiri Muslim".Hardline Hurriyat chairman Syed Ali Geelani too smells rat in the incident and sees "the hand of communal elements and secret agencies".
"People in Kashmir always greet visitors and pilgrims. However, bodies of our youth are returned instead," alleged Geelani.
The 83-year-old separatist also criticised the police's role. "Police take swift action when it comes to pro-Islam and pro-movement Kashmiri youth. However, the police expressed helplessness when the victim's family sought help," said Geelani.
Awami Ittihaad Party president and Langate MLA Engineer Rashid also expressed anguish over the death. "Teli was beaten to death in a mysterious incident by miscreants in Mumbai. The incident is a continuation of the process to frighten Kashmiris and push them back to the Valley, which has already turned as a huge jail for them," he said.
The legislator said, "(Chief minister) Omar Abdullah must ask his conscience that what his praises for Indian leaders and its security agencies have yielded so far."
On June 7, Kashmir witnessed similar protests in Baramulla when Amir Yousuf Mir, a model, was found hanging in Thane. The family alleged that Mir was killed before he was hanged.