SRINAGAR (AFP) Leaders in Indian-held Kashmir Wednesday dismissed overtures from Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for greater political autonomy in the region following months of anti-India unrest. Appealing to Kashmiri Muslims to give peace a chance, Singh had said Tuesday that his government would consider any consensus proposal for autonomy as long as it remained within the ambit of the constitution. He also announced the creation of a panel of experts that would draw up a jobs plan for Occupied Kashmir where rampant unemployment - especially among young people - is fuelling the already deep resentment against Indian rule. But senior Kashmir leaders rejected Singhs initiative. Our fight is for independence, not autonomy, Javed Mir, a former freedom fighter turned politician, told AFP. We will continue our fight for our goal through peaceful protests, said Mir, who had been among the first Kashmiris to take up arms in 1989 when frustration against Indian rule boiled over into a full-blown struggle. Under the terms, Kashmir was granted a relatively high degree of autonomy, excluding areas like defence and foreign affairs.But those powers have been eroded over the years, and renewed promises of greater autonomy gain little traction in Kashmiri circles. Our struggle is not for the restoration of autonomy. It is to seek our right to self-determination, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, an influential moderate APHC leader, told AFP. We should be allowed to decide whether we want to remain with India, accede to Pakistan or carve out an independent state, he said. The IHK legislative assembly in 2000 passed a resolution favouring full restoration of the states autonomy, but it was rejected by the then Hindu-nationalist government in New Delhi. Autonomy is the main demand of the ruling National Conference, the states biggest pro-India political party. Hardline Kashmiri leader Syed Ali Geelani said Kashmiri opposition to Indian rule ran far deeper than the issue of unemployment. The prime minister has failed to accept the ground realities that Kashmiris want freedom from India. Kashmiris are not sacrificing their lives for jobs, Geelani said. Violence erupted in Occupied Kashmir following the death on June 11 of a 17-year-old boy struck by a police tear-gas shell. Since then thousands of mostly young Kashmiris have taken to the streets of the main city Srinagar and other towns on an almost daily basis, defying curfew orders and pelting police with stones and rocks. Around 50 have died, most as the result of police shooting, with 33 people killed in the last two weeks. Meanwhile, three policemen and a woman were killed in Indian-held Kashmir, police said Wednesday. The woman was killed and eight other people injured when their bus was caught in crossfire between freedom fighters and Indian soldiers during an ambush, police said. Freedom fighters also killed three policemen in a separate attack about 50 kilometres north of Srinagar.