Curfew-like restrictions continue in Kashmir

Strict curfew-like restrictions remained enforced across Kashmir valley and in many parts of Jammu division on Wednesday on the first anniversary of the abrogation of the special constitutional position of Jammu & Kashmir. Authorities had on Monday announced a 2-day curfew to foil any attempts of protests on the anniversary but lifted it after 24 hours, saying Wednesday’s restrictions were imposed in the wake of COVID19.

All the shops, business establishments were closed and the traffic was off the roads. Roads in Srinagar and elsewhere were blocked with razor wire and barricades.

Only the people associated with health facilities and other essential services were allowed to move. The roads and streets of Srinagar witnessed round the clock patrolling by the joint parties of police and paramilitary forces.

In most parts of the city on Tuesday morning, police vehicles fitted with public address systems were ordering the people to stay indoors.

The announcements were made in Lal Chowk, Maisuma, Jehangir Chowk and several other places. “There was a government order and COVID restrictions have been extended till August 8,” a police official told the Greater Kashmir, adding, “So police imposed the restrictions.”

The Srinagar administration which had announced a 48-hour-long curfew beginning Tuesday morning, issued a fresh order last evening saying the curfew had been lifted as the day remained incident-free but made it clear that restrictions would continue in view of a spike in Covid-19 cases.

The order, however, states that restrictions ordered earlier under Section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code and the Disaster Management Act, in view of the prevailing situation due to Covid-19, will remain enforced across the district.

In other districts, the administration imposed strict restrictions on the movement of people. The reason given by the authorities for these restrictions was containment of Covid-19 infection.

Barricades were set up at hundreds of places in the Valley including Srinagar city while concertina wires were laid to block some roads.

Reports from north, south and central Kashmir districts said that strict restrictions were imposed on the movement of people and transport since Tuesday morning.

They said that main roads were blocked by razor wires and police had erected nakas at most of the places.