Police in Kashmir have arrested 20 persons for pro-Palestine protests on Saturday, warning that nobody will be allowed to "disrupt the peaceful atmosphere in Kashmir."
The youths have been arrested in Padshahi Bagh and old Srinagar areas of the city. In Padshahi Bagh around 16 youths have been arrested while four have been held in old Srinagar.
Police said that in Padshahi Bagh a group of youths numbering between 25 to 35 tried to "disrupt peace" while in old Srinagar the number was around 10.
"So far 20 youths have been arrested," Inspector General of Police, Kashmir, Vijay Kumar told the Greater Kashmir. "Anybody found disrupting the peaceful atmosphere won't be spared."
Soon after both the incidents, the IGP in a statement said that the situation in Palestine will not be allowed to disturb peace in Kashmir.
"We would not allow elements to use the Palestine situation to disrupt peace and order in Kashmir," the IGP said. "J&K Police is keeping a very close watch on elements who are attempting to leverage the unfortunate situation in Palestine to disturb public peace and order in the Kashmir valley. We are a professional force and are sensitive to public anguish." But, he said, "J&K Police has a legal responsibility to ensure law and order as well. It, however, wouldn't allow cynical encashment of the public anger to trigger violence, lawlessness and disorder on Kashmir streets. Expressing opinion is a freedom but engineering and inciting violence on streets is unlawful," he said.
He warned that "all irresponsible social media comments that result in violence and breaking of law" including Covid protocol will attract legal action.
However, Srinagar police in a statement said that those protesting were booked in connection with violation of Corona curfew.