Srinagar, Aug 20 (IBNS): Amid celebrations, Kashmir Valley witnessed violence at many parts soon after the Eid prayers.
A police van was burnt down in Srinagar while at Sopore, youths pelted stones on Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) pickets located inside State Bank of India (SBI).
Eid-ul-Fitr was celebrated in Kashmir with traditional fervor and gaiety. The biggest congregations were held at Jamia Masjid, Nowhatta, Hazratbal, Sonawar and Idgah in Srinagar. Thousands of people, including men, women and children, participated in the Eid prayers.
To maintain law and order and to stop any sort of violence, authorities placed all senior Kashmiri separatist leaders including Hurriyat hawk Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaize Molvi Omar Farooq, Shabir Ahmed Shah, Nayeen Khan and others under house arrest during the congregational Eid prayers in Srinagar.
"These measures have been taken to ensure that nobody disturbs peace and tranquility in the city on the occasion of Eid-ul-Fitr," a police official said.
In Srinagar and other towns of the Valley, locals started gathering at Eidgahs since early morning.
After offering prayers, people greeted and hugged each other. Children and youth wearing new clothes added special colour to the Eid festivities.
Muslims ate lunch on Eid-ul-Fitr after 30 days of fasting during Ramadan.
Authorities had made special security arrangements at various Eidgahs in the state to ensure peaceful conduct of the prayers. Chief Minister Omar Abdullah and members of his council of ministers joined devotees in offering prayers.
Abdullah offered prayers at the Hazratbal shrine in Srinagar.
According to reports, Eid prayers were offered peacefully in district headquarters of Ganderbal, Bandipora, Baramulla, Kupwara, Badgam, Pulwama, Shopian, Kulgam and Anantnag.
Despite heavy deployment of police and para-military personnel all across the Valley, violent protests were seen in many parts.
In North Kashmir's Sopore Town, youths, soon after Eid prayers, assembled near State Bank of India building where CRPF is deployed to guard the Bank.
They pelted stones on CRPF personnel and raised anti-India slogans.
The police and CRPF personnel retaliated and fired some tear gas shells to disperse the agitated youths.
In a separate incident, three cops of Jammu and Kashmir Police were severely thrashed by youths at Aali-Masjid Srinagar and their van was set on fire when the cops were on their way to Soura.
According to reports, a police van, pertaining to Qamarwari police division bearing registration number JK01N-2184, was on its way to Soura when scores of youths intercepted it near Aali-Masjid, Idgah.
They dragged the 3 policemen, including the driver, out of the vehicle and thrashed them severly.
"Their (policemen) unifrom was torn into pieces and they were beaten to pulp. One of the policeman tried to fire in the air, however before doing so he was overpowered by the youths and beaten up," an eye-witness told IBNS.
Agitated youths sprinkled petrol on the police van and set it on fire.
When contacted, a top police officer confirmed the incident but added that it is not clear whether the weapons were also snatched from them or not.
The three cops were identified as Sub-Inspector, Ghulam Hassan, Hawaldar, Bashir Ahmed and Constable Gulzar Ahmed.