A fire has destroyed a revered Muslim shrine in India's portion of Kashmir, prompting anti-government protests by local residents angered over what they say was a slow response by firefighters.
A police official says the cause of the fire Monday in the 200-year old shrine in the heart of Srinagar city was not immediately known. The official said the blaze started from the roof of the shrine and quickly engulfed the wooden structure. He spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media.
Scores of firefighters tried to douse the flames but a group of protesters threw stones at them, saying their response was slow. Thousands of people later crowded the streets of Srinagar, chanting anti-India slogans and demanding Kashmir's freedom from Indian rule.