Strike against scrapping of special status enters 63rd day in Kashmir

Published: Oct 6, 2019, 10:10 am IST

The strike against scrapping of Articles 370 and 35 A in Jammu and Kashmir, besides dividing the state into two Union Territories, entered the 63rd day in Kashmir valley, where business and other activities remained crippled.

Meanwhile, hundreds of vendors have put up their stalls at the famous ‘Sunday Market’ under police station Kothibagh in the heart of the city, the first such activity in the summer capital, after August 5.

There was no report of any major untoward incident in Kashmir valley during the past 24 hours, officials said, adding that there was also no curfew restriction in any part of the valley on Sunday. However, restrictions under Section 144 CrPC, banning assembling of four or more persons continued, as a precautionary measure, to maintain law and order.

Train service, mobile and internet connectivity remained suspended since August 5, in the valley. All gates of the historic Jamia Masjid in Shehar-e-Khas (SeK), the stronghold of moderate Hurriyat Conference (HC) Mirwaiz Moulvi Omar Farooq, remained closed for devotees since August 5.

The Central Paramilitary Forces (CPMF) remained deployed in Jamia Market and outside the Masjid, to maintain law and order.No prayers could be offered in the Masjid, including on Fridays, due to restrictions. Shops and business establishments remained closed and traffic was also off the roads.

Business and other activities remained closed in this summer capital and its adjoining areas, for the past 63 days. Public transport, including the State Road Transport Corporation (SRTC) buses, also remained off the roads on Saturday.
However, private vehicles were plying on most of the routes in the city and outskirts, while a number of cabs were also seen operating on some routes in the morning.

Shops and business establishments continued to function for about three hours from 0600 hrs to 0900 hrs in the summer capital, including historic Lal Chowk, the nerve centre of the city and other Civil Lines areas. However later, all shops were closed again for the day.

The famous Sunday market was open from Radio Kashmir, Srinagar crossing to Regal Chowk only. Thousands of customers from different parts of the valley were visiting the market every Sunday. However, the number of customers was very less, due to non-availability of transport service.

A large number of CPMF personnel were seen deployed in strength in the city, to prevent any law and order problem. Security forces remained on high alert to close any road with barbed wire, within the shortest notice.
Work in government offices and banks on main roads, particularly on the ground floor, remained affected in the civil lines and uptown.

There was no change in the situation elsewhere in the valley, where life remained paralysed with all shops and business establishments closed and traffic off the roads on Sunday.

Reports of shutdown were also received from south Kashmir districts of Anantnag, Shopian, Pulwama, Awantipora, Tral and Kulgam. Business and other activities remained shut and public transport was off the roads.

However, private vehicles could be seen plying on some routes, including on Srinagar-Jammu national highway, where additional security forces remained deployed on the highway, to prevent any stone pelting.

Shutdown continued for the 63rd day in this and other north Kashmir districts and tehsil headquarters, a report from Baramulla said. A 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 were also received from central Kashmir districts of Budgam and Ganderbal.

The internet and mobile connectivity of all Cellular companies, including the Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) also remained suspended for the past 63 days in the valley. However, landline telephones were working normally.