SRINAGAR – Authorities have clamped an undeclared curfew in parts of Srinagar and placed veteran Shia leader Maulana Abbas Ansari under house arrest to stop a traditional Muharram procession today.
The restrictions have been imposed in the areas falling under the jurisdiction of five police stations of Srinagar.
Police sources said the commercial nerve centre of the capital stretching from Karan-Nagar to Dalgate including Jehangir Chowk and Lal Chowk and Maulana Azad Road have been sealed off and no one is allowed to enter the besieged area.
Barricades have been erected at all entry points with large number of police and CRPF personnel deployed there.
Police sources said restrictions have been imposed on the movement of public in the areas falling under the jurisdiction of police stations, Shaheed Gunj, Maisuma, Kralkhud, Kothibagh and Ram Munshi Bagh.
Meanwhile police sealed off the residence of Maulana Abbas in old Srinagar’s Khanqahi Sokhta area late last night confining him to his home.
Earlier Masroor Ansari, son of Maulana Abbas was arrested on Tuesday.
Abbas had vowed to take out the procession which has been banned by government eversince militancy broke out in Kashmir in late eighties.
Authorities cite security reasons for the ban on the traditional procession of 8th of Muharram and Ashura in Srinagar. However Abbas contests the govt ban saying no such restriction is imposed for annual Amarnath Yatra or public rallys of mainstream politicians.
Meanwhile he says Muharram processions in realtively unsafe Down Town Srinagar and rural Kashmir have never posed a security threat.
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