Life in Kashmir Remains Crippled for 67th Day 


A woman passing nearby a closed market at business hub Lal Chowk in Srinagar amid Shutdown.

SRINAGAR – Normal life was affected in the Kashmir valley, including summer capital, Srinagar, where people are protesting against scrapping of Article 370 and 35 A, besides dividing the state into two Union Territories on August 5.

Mobile and internet service of all Cellular companies, including Bharat Sanchar Ningam Limited (BSNL) and train service between Baramulla in north Kashmir to Banihal in Jammu region remained suspended since August 5.

There was no curfew restriction in any part of the valley where situation remained by and large peaceful during the past 24 hours. However, restrictions under Section 144 CrPC, banning assemble of four or more persons, continued as a precautionary measure to maintain law and order.

Large number of Central Paramilitary Forces (CPMF) remained deployed in the Jamia Market and outside the Masjid to maintain law and order. Shops and business establishments remained closed and traffic was also off the roads in the down town.  All gates of historic Jamia Masjid remained closed for devotees since August 5.  Mirwaiz is under house arrest since August 4 night.

Majority shops and business establishments reopened this morning from 0630 hrs in major business hubs in the civil lines, including historic Lal Chowk, the nerve centre of the city, Budshah Chowk, Gonikhan, Majraj Bazar, Hari Singh High Street (HSHS), Batmaloo and Koker Bazar. However, very few shops were open in the Maisuma locality, stronghold of Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) chairman Mohammad Yaseen Malik, presently under detention in Delhi’s Tihar Jail.  Later at 0930 hrs, everything came to halt and these areas again presented a deserted look with only CPMF personnel guarding the streets.

Similar situation was also witnessed in the old town, including Habba Kadal, Chankral Mohalla, Kani Kadal and Fateh Kadal.

Though the number of private vehicles on the roads has improved considerably, public transport, including State Road Transport Corporation (SRTC) buses remained off the roads.

Life, elsewhere in the valley, remained paralysed with all shops and business establishments closed and traffic off the roads on Thursday.

Reports received here said that shutdown also continued in south Kashmir districts of Anantnag, Shopian, Pulwama, Awantipora, Tral and Kulgam. Business and other activities remained shut and public transport off the roads.

Shutdown continued for the 67th day in this and other north Kashmir districts and tehsil headquarters, a report from Baramulla said. Large number of CPMF remained deployed to prevent any law and order problem. However, private vehicles and some cabs could be seen plying on the Srinagar-Baramulla highway. Reports of continued strike since August 5 were also received from central Kashmir districts of Budgam and Ganderbal.

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