Hundreds of government forces have taken to the streets of Indian-administered Kashmir to stop a rally by separatists, organised to mark the anniversaries of the assassinations of two Kashmiri leaders.
More than a dozen men marched through the empty streets of the city, protesting a decision by the authorities to put Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, who was scheduled to lead the rally and some other separatist leaders under house arrest.
Farooq was to have led a march to a cemetery where his father and hundreds of other Kashmiri separatists and civilians killed during the last 25 years are buried.
His father, Mirwaiz Mohammed Farooq, Kashmir’s chief cleric, was killed by assailants 25 years ago, and Abdul Gani Lone, another separatist leader, was gunned down in 2002 at a public rally observing Farooq’s death anniversary.
No-one has been convicted of the killings of Mirwaiz Mohammed Farooq and Abdul Gani Lone, who had supported Kashmir’s right to vote on whether it should be independent or governed either by India or Pakistan
The Kashmiri leaders were believed to have been assassinated by militants for softening their stance on the issue.