KASHMIR REMEMBERS 1931 MARTYRS
Shutdown,Restrictions Mark 81st Anniversary
SHABIR IBN YUSUF
Srinagar, July 13: Kashmir Valley Friday observed a complete shutdown to remember the martyrs of July 13, 1931, while the government enforced undeclared curfew in old Srinagar to foil the march called by separatists towards Naqshband Sahab Shrine.
The strike was called by both factions of Hurriyat Conference to remember the 22 Kashmiris martyred by the troops of Maharaja Hari Singh in 1931 after the people rose against the autocratic ruler.
Chairmen of both factions of Hurriyat Conference- Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq- and other senior separatist leaders including chairman Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) Muhammad Yasin Malik, National Front (NF) chairman Nayeem Ahmad Khan, Bilal Gani Lone and Shahid-ul-Islam were put under house arrest.
Shops and business establishments remained closed across the valley and traffic was off the roads. Even the inter-district transport was thin. Schools and government offices remained closed as State observes July 13 as a holiday.
Since Friday morning, heavy contingents of police and Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) were deployed in lanes and by-lanes of Srinagar to thwart any protest demonstration. Undeclared curfew was imposed under the jurisdiction of six police stations that include Khanyar, Rainawari, Nowhatta, MR Gunj, Safakadal and Kralkhud.
In Khanyar area of old Srinagar where the Martyrs Graveyard is located, police and CRPF laid razor wires and erected barricades at road junctions since Thursday evening to stop the movement of people. Besides the fortification of the area around the graveyard, armored vehicles of police and CRPF were also seen at road junctions.
“When we woke up today morning there were only police and CRPF men around. They did not make any announcement of curfew but for whole day we were forced to stay indoors,” Irshad Ahmad of Khanyar told Greater Kashmir over telephone. He added that residents were not allowed to purchase eatables and other essentials. “Even people were barred from offering congregational prayers in mosques. They have erected barricades and stopped our movement,” he said.
Uptown areas of Srinagar also witnessed heavy deployment of police and CRPF since Friday morning; however skeletal transport was witnessed plying on the roads. “Most of vehicles plying on the roads in uptown were coming from airport area, carrying Yatris and other tourists,” a middle rung police official posted in south Srinagar told Greater Kashmir.
Sources in police said that inter-district transport was also badly affected due to the strike. Skeletal transport were seen plying on inter-district roads, however vehicles were being thoroughly checked at entrance points of Srinagar.
Police sources said that vehicles coming from north Kashmir were being thoroughly checked at Parimpora. The vehicles coming from south Kashmir were being checked at Pantha Chowk.
Complete strike was also observed in districts of Ganderbal and Budgam.
Normal life was also paralyzed in Baramulla, Kupwara, Handwara, Sopore and Bandipora in north Kashmir due to the strike. All shops and business establishments remained closed and traffic was off the roads. All the areas of north Kashmir witnessed heavy deployment of police and CRPF.
Strike was also observed in Islamabad (Anantnag), Pulwama, Kulgam and Shopian districts of south Kashmir. The roads in these districts wore a deserted look. Shops and business establishments remained closed.
Lastupdate on : Fri, 13 Jul 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Fri, 13 Jul 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Sat, 14 Jul 2012 00:00:00 IST
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