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We want culprits to be arrested: Kin of the trucker

A 24-hour bandh is being observed in Kashmir by the separatists to lodge their protest against the death of 24-year-old trucker Zahid Bhat who was attacked by Hindu mob using petrol bombs in Udhampur.

Brother-in-law of Zahed, Maulvi Mohammed Ashraf said, the religious intolerance took the life of innocent”. “The attackers belonged to right-wing groups. On whose behest was the attack conducted? We want them to be arrested.”

Curfew-like restrictions were imposed in eight police station areas in Kashmir and several separatist leaders were put under house arrest in view of a strike called on Monday to protest the death of a truck conductor who was injured in Udhampur petrol bomb attack.

Zahid’s body, that reached Srinagar around 6.45 pm, was received by PDP president Mehbooba Mufti and two state Cabinet ministers. Botengo falls in Mehbooba’s parliamentary constituency.

“Zahid was given the best care” Medical Superintendent Dr A K Rai said, “Zahid was admitted with over 60 per cent burns in his upper body and face… In such cases, management is extremely difficult. All the critical internal organs are in the upper body. Lower-body burns of even high percentages can be managed more easily,” he said.

Movement of people was restricted in Anantnag and Bijbehara police station areas in South Kashmir, a police official said, ahead of the funeral of conductor Zahid, who succumbed to his injuries at a Delhi hospital on Sunday after battling for life for nine days.

Similar strict restrictions have been imposed in six police station areas of Srinagar, where protests had broken out on Sunday over the trucker’s death. The affected areas are M R Gunj, Nowhatta, Safa Kadal, Maisuma, Rainawari and Khanyar.

Hardline Hurriyat leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani and JKDFP leader Shabir Ahmad Shah were among several separatists placed under house arrest, the official said. The restrictions have been imposed as a precautionary measure following violent protests in many parts of the Valley.