Alexa
  • Directory of Taiwan

Kashmir protesters in burn car outside restaurant they say was used by prostitutes

Kashmir protesters in burn car outside restaurant they say was used by prostitutes

Hundreds of protesters in the Indian-controlled part of Kashmir smashed the windows of a restaurant they said was a being used for prostitution, set the owner's car on fire and damaged two other cars Friday, officials said.
A small group of protesters gathered in the afternoon outside the Le Meridien fast-food restaurant in the area's main city, Srinagar, shouting slogans claiming that the restaurant was being used by prostitutes and was selling alcohol illegally, said senior police officer Farooq Ahmed.
The protesters were joined by nearly 500 Muslim worshippers leaving Friday prayers at a nearby mosque, and some threw stones at the restaurant, Ahmed said.
Police had to use bamboo batons to disperse the mob, he said. Six people were detained.
Selling sex is illegal in India, though the ban is rarely enforced. Licensed liquor vendors can sell alcoholic drinks in predominantly Muslim Jammu-Kashmir state, but few dare to, fearing retribution from nearly a dozen rebel groups active in the area since an Islamic insurgency began there 18 years ago.
Police are investigating the role of the Dukhtaran-e-Millat, a radical Islamic women's group, in Friday's attack.
"It seems the Dukhtaran-e-Millat were behind inciting the public," Ahmed said. He did not say if they were also investigating the accusations against Le Meridien.
Dukhtaran-e-Millat denied responsibility for the attack.
"We are not involved in this case at all. This was done by the public and we salute them," Asiya Andrabi, the head of the group, said in a telephone interview.
Andrabi's organization has tried to enforce a strict Islamic dress code in the Himalayan region of Kashmir. It burns Valentines Day cards and posters nearly every year.
Similar protests took place in May when hundreds of men and women took to the streets, angered by a sex scandal that allegedly involved bureaucrats, police officials and politicians. That scandal was unearthed after videos and mobile phone multimedia messages _ showing nude girls and amateur porn films _ began circulating in Srinagar.
Kashmir is divided between neighboring rivals Pakistan and India, but claimed in its entirety by both. Islamic rebel groups have been fighting since 1989 for Kashmir's independence from largely Hindu India, or the territory's merger with Muslim Pakistan. More than 68,000 people have been killed in the conflict, most of them civilians.


Updated : 2021-10-17 14:30 GMT+08:00