Asia

Indian forces seal roads in Kashmir to stop protest march

  • Indian paramilitary soldiers patrol during curfew in Srinagar, Indian-controlled Kashmir, Friday, Aug. 19, 2016. The Himalayan region has been under curfew for almost six weeks as the largest street protests in years erupted after Indian troops killed a top rebel leader, and security was tightened further in the week preceding India's Independence day. (AP Photo/Dar Yasin)

    Indian paramilitary soldiers patrol during curfew in Srinagar, Indian-controlled Kashmir, Friday, Aug. 19, 2016. The Himalayan region has been under curfew for almost six weeks as the largest street protests in years erupted after Indian troops killed a top rebel leader, and security was tightened further in the week preceding India's Independence day. (AP Photo/Dar Yasin)  (The Associated Press)

  • An Indian paramilitary soldier patrols during curfew in Srinagar, Indian-controlled Kashmir, Friday, Aug. 19, 2016. The Himalayan region has been under curfew for almost six weeks as the largest street protests in years erupted after Indian troops killed a top rebel leader, and security was tightened further in the week preceding India's Independence day. (AP Photo/Dar Yasin)

    An Indian paramilitary soldier patrols during curfew in Srinagar, Indian-controlled Kashmir, Friday, Aug. 19, 2016. The Himalayan region has been under curfew for almost six weeks as the largest street protests in years erupted after Indian troops killed a top rebel leader, and security was tightened further in the week preceding India's Independence day. (AP Photo/Dar Yasin)  (The Associated Press)

  • Indian paramilitary soldiers stand guard during curfew in Srinagar, Indian-controlled Kashmir, Friday, Aug. 19, 2016. The Himalayan region has been under curfew for almost six weeks as the largest street protests in years erupted after Indian troops killed a top rebel leader, and security was tightened further in the week preceding India's Independence day. (AP Photo/Dar Yasin)

    Indian paramilitary soldiers stand guard during curfew in Srinagar, Indian-controlled Kashmir, Friday, Aug. 19, 2016. The Himalayan region has been under curfew for almost six weeks as the largest street protests in years erupted after Indian troops killed a top rebel leader, and security was tightened further in the week preceding India's Independence day. (AP Photo/Dar Yasin)  (The Associated Press)

Government forces have sealed roads with barbed wire and steel barricades in Indian-controlled Kashmir to prevent a separatist protest march to a village where Indian troops killed four civilians and injured 15 others earlier this week.

Fearing anti-India protests after Friday afternoon prayers, tens of thousands of government forces are patrolling the region and strictly enforcing a round-the-clock curfew.

Shops, businesses and schools have remained closed because of a security lockdown and protest strikes since the killing of a popular rebel commander on July 8 that sparked some of the largest protests against Indian rule in recent years.

At least 63 civilians have been killed and thousands injured mostly by government forces firing of bullets and shotgun pellets on rock-throwing protesters. Two policemen have also been killed in the clashes.