SRINAGAR Governor Satya Pal Malik on Saturday skipped the official function at the Martyrs’ graveyard here and instead deputed his advisor and divisional commissioner Kashmir for paying homage to the 22 people martyred in firing by forces of Dogra ruler Maharaja Hari Singh on this day in 1931.
Authorities also imposed restrictions in parts of Srinagar and placed Hurriyat Conference chairmen under house arrest in wake of Martyrs Day, while as a complete shutdown was observed in the Valley to mark the day.
ADGP, Armed, S. J. M. Gillani, ADGP, Law and Order, Muneer Ahmad Khan, IGP Kashmir S P Pani, DIG CKR, V. K. Birdie, Deputy Commissioner Srinagar, Shahid Iqbal Choudhary, SSP Srinagar, Dr. Haseeb Mughal, Commandant JKAP 9th Battalion, Manzoor Dalal, besides other senior officers of the district and divisional administration were also present on the occasion.
A contingent of J&K Police posted the bugle and presented the ceremonial guard-of-honour to the Martyrs.
Barring the Bharatiya Janata Party, the entire spectrum of political ideologies in the state observes July 13 as martyrs day in J&K.
Malik’s predecessor N N Vohra had also skipped the official function last year but did pay homage to the martyrs of 1931 in 2017.
However, Malik in his Friday’s message on the eve of Martyrs’ Day called for collective efforts from all sections of the society to secure rapid growth and development of the state on all fronts.
The governor said Jammu and Kashmir has always been known for its glorious pluralistic ethos and harmony and emphasised the crucial importance of maintaining unity and brotherhood for ushering the state towards peace and prosperity.
National Conference president Farooq Abdullah, senior PDP leader A R Veeri and Congress leader Peerzada Sayeed were among the host of mainstream politicians who paid homage to the martyrs.
CPI (M) leader Mohammad Yousuf Tarigami, President of Democratic Party Nationalist Ghulam Hassan Mir, Chairman of Peoples Democratic Front Hakeem Yaseen and President of Awami Ithad Party Er Rasheed also offered tributes to martyrs.
Hurriyat leaders including Hurriyat Conference-M chairman Mirwaz Umar Farooq were placed under house arrest to prevent them from visiting the graveyard.
The Joint Resistance Leadership had called for a shutdown as a mark of respect to the martyrs’ of 1931 and to press for resolution of the Kashmir issue.
Normal life in the valley was severely affected due to the strike called by joint resistance leadership as shops and other business establishments remained closed while public transport remained off the roads, the officials said.
They said some private vehicles, however, could be seen plying various intra-city and inter-district routes of Kashmir.