Kashmir Shuts Down On Maqbool Bhat’s Anniversary

A view of closed market in Lalchowk Srinagar on Maqbool Bhat’s Anniversary. KO Photo: Abid Bhat

SRINAGAR – Authorities on Tuesday snapped mobile internet services in Kashmir as a precautionary measure to prevent any law and order disturbance on the 36th death anniversary of JKLF founder Mohammad Maqbool Bhat, officials said.

Mobile internet services were suspended early in the morning as the authorities apprehended violence in the Valley in view of a bandh call given by separatist outfits to mark Bhat’s death anniversary, they said.

Authorities had restored 2G internet services in Kashmir on January 25, more than five months after snapping all communication facilities in the valley following the nullification of Article 370 on August 5 last year.

The internet services were suspended on Sunday as well as the separatists had called for a shutdown to mark the death anniversary of Parliament attack convict Mahammad Afzal Guru.

Police on Saturday lodged an FIR against the banned Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) for calling a strike on Guru’s death anniversary.

Guru was hanged in 2013 inside the Tihar jail in Delhi for his role in the Parliament attack in December 2001.

Bhat was hanged in 1984 and is buried inside the Tihar jail.

Normal life in Kashmir was affected due to the strike, officials said.

Markets and business establishments remained closed while most of the public transport was off the roads, they said.

Security personnel were deployed in strength at vulnerable places in the city and elsewhere in the valley to maintain law and order, the officials said.

There have been no reports of any untoward incident from anywhere in the valley so far, they added.

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