Islamabad, September 9: At least 22 activists were arrested in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir for alleged rioting amid a pro-independence sit-in, a media report said. The arrests took place on Sunday in Hajira sub-division, Dawn news said in the report.
On Saturday, police had stopped thousands of participants of a "Freedom Long March" called by Sardar Mohammad Saghir-led faction of the Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) in Dawarandi village of the Hajira area, when they were insisting to move ahead towards Tetrinote that lies in the closest proximity of the Line of Control (LoC).
DIG of Poonch Tahir Mehmood Qureshi told Dawn that the decision to stop the marchers was taken in the interest of their safety and that "their leaders had given an undertaking to the administration that they would not go beyond a designated spot to avoid the risk of Indian shelling".
However, the marchers ignored the warning and insisted to go beyond the designated spot in Dawarandi, the DIG alleged.
Some of the marchers climbed the adjacent mountains and pelted stones on the police. He added that police resorted to tear gas shelling to disperse the marchers. Qureshi told Dawn that 25 people were arrested initially, but three of them were released for not being involved in the activity.