Kashmir shuts on August 15

A complete shutdown is being observed across Kashmir today following a strike call given by Kashmiri separatist leaders against August 15 celebrations in Kashmir.
Kashmir shuts on August 15
Aman Farooq/GK

A complete shutdown is being observed across Kashmir today following a strike call given by Kashmiri separatist leaders against August 15 celebrations in Kashmir.

All businesses and shops were closed and traffic remained off the roads, however, schools, colleges and government institutions are closed due to a holiday.

Roads are wearing a deserted look in Srinagar city and similar reports were received from other district headquarters.

Some private vehicles were seen plying on these roads.

Meanwhile, a large number of police and paramilitary forces have been deployed at major intersections to prevent any incidents during the official celebrations being held at Bakshi stadium where Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed took salute over a march past.

Security personnel are guarding barricades of concertina wire erected at the entry and exit points of Srinagar city.

Almost all the vehicles crossing these barricades are frisked before being allowed to enter the city.

The Chairman of Hurriyat Conference (M) Mirwaiz Umar Farooq had asked Kashmiris to protest against the atrocities aimed to suppress the struggle of Kashmiris besides showing complete commitment and resolve towards the movement.

"Hurriyat is not against the Independence celebrations and progress of any country. However, the peace and prosperity in the region could only be achieved if Kashmir issue is resolved according to the wishes and aspirations of Kashmir," Mirwaiz said in a statement.

Hurriyat Conference (G) chairman Syed Ali Geelani also called for complete and statewide shutdown on August 15, appealing to the teachers, students and their parents to boycott all functions related to the event. 

"We are not against the freedom of any country including India but until this country accepts the right of the Kashmiri people and provides them a chance to decide their future by allowing independent plebiscite in Jammu & Kashmir, till then struggle will continue," Geelani said in a statement.

"Our demand for Right to Self Determination is purely democratic and India has also promised to fulfill it at national as well as international levels but it (this country) backtracked from its promises and is now busy in suppressing the genuine and just voices of the Kashmiri nation." 

He termed as appropriate and based on reality the Pakistan's stand not to invite the J&K assembly speaker to the upcoming Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference (CPC) in Islamabad.

"Kashmir is an internationally acknowledged dispute and Delhi can neither succeed in changing the status and nature of this state by its rigid and stubborn policy nor can be this region kept permanently under the forced control," Geelani said, praising the firmness of the Pakistan government's stand despite the boycott threat given by the Government of India.

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