Kashmiri Separatists Call for Shutdown on Saturday to Protest Masarat Alam's Detention Under Public Safety Act

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Kashmiri Separatists Call for Shutdown on Saturday to Protest Masarat Alam's Detention Under Public Safety Act

Kashmiri separatist Masarat Alam has been booked under Public Safety Act

Srinagar:  Kashmiri separatists have called for shutdown on Saturday in the valley against the detention of hardliner leader Masarat Alam under the Public Safety Act, a law that will allow the state to keep him in jail for two years without trial.

Yesterday, the valley saw sporadic clashes between Alam's supporters and the police. Protests were also held in some areas against his arrest, which has become the rallying point for separatists in Kashmir. The Jammu and Kashmir government has shifted Alam out of the valley to a jail in Jammu.

Last week, the 45-year-old led a rally in Srinagar, where his supporters waved Pakistani flags and raised slogans. Amid outrage, the Centre ordered the Jammu and Kashmir government, led by its ally PDP or People's Democratic Party, to take "immediate and stringent" action.

Alam was earlier booked for sedition and waging war against the country. He had organized the rally to welcome his ideological mentor Syed Ali Shah Geelani.

Besides Alam, the police have booked several other separatists for waging war against the country, sedition and conspiracy. But Alam is the only one who has been arrested so far.

Alam is accused of organising stone-throwing protests in the Valley in 2010, during which more than 100 people died in police firing. His release became a flash point in the alliance between the PDP and BJP, which had struggled to bridge an ideological divide.

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