Oppn protests curfew, restrictions

Excelsior Correspondent
JAMMU, Mar 8: The Opposition People’s Democratic Party (PDP) today protested in the Legislative Assembly over imposition of curfew and restrictions in the Kashmir Valley disruption Question Hour for about 10 minutes demanding a reply from the Government.
As soon as the House resumed its business of the day, PDP MLAs were on their feat and some of them marched towards the front rows voicing concern over prolonged spells of curfew and other restrictions in the Kashmir Valley making lives of people miserable.
Independent MLA Engineer Rashid trooped near Well of the House and started shouting on imposition of curfew in the Valley. Mr Rashid remained near the Well for 62 minutes including entire Question Hour.
CPM MLA Mohammad Yusuf Tarigami also protested against curfew from his seat.
“Chief Minister Saheb Jawaab To Day Do. Logon Ko Jumah Ki Namaaz Bhi Naheen Padne Dhi Jaa Rahi Hai (CM Saheb please give reply. The people are not being allowed to offer Friday prayers)’’, Mr Rashid said when Omar Abdullah was sitting in the House.
Speaker Mubarak Gul told agitated members of PDP, who wanted to raise the issue of curfew, that he can’t allowed disruption of Question Hour daily.
“Under which rules and procedures will I allow the discussion in the Assembly. You haven’t moved any motion in the writing. I don’t want to silence your voice but I have to run the Question Hour’’, Mr Gul told the MLAs. However, he assured the Opposition MLAs that he would give time to them to raise the issue after the Question Hour.
On Rashid’s charge that he was not being given time to speak in the House, Mr Gul asked the Assembly Secretary to disclose the time given to the MLA to speak on various issues.
While PDP MLAs took their seats after about 10 minutes, Mr Rashid remained in Well of the House for full Question Hour during which he continued to shout at both treasury as well as Opposition benches.
PDP MLA Mushtaq Shah “Government’s MLA’ and enacting drama in the Assembly at their behest. Both had heated exchanges.
In between the Question Hour, Mr Gul made repeated appeals to Mr Rashid to take his seat with the assurance that he will give him time to speak after the Question Hour. However, Mr Rashid remained near the Well of the House.
Blaming Omar Abdullah-Government for its failure to control the situation, PDP MLA Abdul Rehman Veeri later alleged that the Government has turned the Valley into a prison by resorting to curfews and chain of arrests.
“The entire Kashmir Valley is under siege. Security forces and police personnel have been entering into people’s houses during night. The people were not being allowed to offer Friday prayers’’, Mr Veeri said.
Later on talking to reporters, Mr Rashid said that the Government has imposed curfew in every village taking the help of the Army and the CRPF.
“If Kashmiris are your own people then why have you imposed curfew?” he wondered adding, political measures and not curfew, was the solution to the Valley’s problems.

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