Life on Freeze as Kashmir Shuts Down for 69th Day

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

SRINAGAR- Normal life remained paralysed for the 69th day on Saturday in the Kashmir valley, where people are protesting against scrapping of Article 370 and 35 A, besides dividing the state into two Union Territories.

Officials said there is no curfew restriction in any part of the Valley however restrictions under Section 144 CrPC, banning assemble of four or more persons, continued as a precautionary measure to maintain law and order. Security forces remain on alert to thwart any attempt to ‘disrupt the peace’, they said.

Meanwhile, train service between Baramulla in north Kashmir to Banihal in South through central Kashmir remained suspended for 69th day. Communication network, including mobile and internet service of all Cellular companies, including Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) also remained suspended.

All gates of city’s Grand Mosque also remain closed for devotees since August 5.  Chief priest Mirwaiz Umer Farooq is under house arrest since August 4 night. No prayers, including on Friday’s could be offered in the place of worship due to restrictions. No Friday prayers were also offered in many other major mosques including Jamia Masjid of Shopian in south Kashmir due to restrictions.

Public transport, including State Road Transport Corporation (SRTC) remained off the roads . However, private vehicles were plying on the roads.

Markets however were open in Srinagar from 0630 hrs till 0930 hrs allowing people to stock essentials. This has been a practice for last several weeks. Later, everything comes to halt and these areas again present a deserted look with only CRPF personnel guarding the streets.

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

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 69th day in this and other north Kashmir districts and tehsil headquarters, a report from Baramulla said. Large number of Central Paramilitary Forces (CPMF) personnel 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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