SRINAGAR, India – Separatists in Indian-controlled Kashmir Shops have called a strike that has shuttered shops across the region in protest of the life sentences handed out by an Indian court to two pro-independence Kashmiri activists.
The activists were convicted last week in the killing of a paramilitary officer in 1990.
Nearly 100 members of the pro-independence separatist group, Jammu-Kashmir Liberation Front, on Monday held a daylong hunger strike in the main city Srinagar to protest the verdict.
The group's leader Yasin Malik called the court order India's "political vendetta" and said such measures would force another armed rebellion in the disputed region.
About 68,000 people have been killed in armed rebellion against Indian rule since 1989 and the ensuing Indian crackdown that has largely crushed the militants.