Authorities impose restrictions in Downtown areas

The Srinagar administration imposed curbs in parts of Downtown while as Friday congregational prayers were disallowed at Jamia Masjid, a day ahead of the Martyrs Day on July 13.

Amid heavy deployment of security forces, restrictions remained in force in Nowhatta and its adjoining areas. Security forces were also deployed in large numbers outside the Jamia Masjid and no one was allowed to proceed towards the grand masjid.

The Hurriyat Conference (M) chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, who delivers Friday sermon at Jamia Masjid, was placed under house detention.

The curbs, according to an official, were imposed as a precautionary measure to maintain peace. The Awami Action Committee had convened a workers’ meet at Mirwaiz Manzil Rajouri Kadal. Mirwaiz was scheduled to chair the meeting.

A joint statement issued by Hurriyat Conference (M) and AAC said that barring people from offering congregational Friday prayers at Jamia Masjid and putting curbs in and around Downtown was “extremely unfortunate and interference in religious obligations of people”.

The AAC and the Hurriyat also castigated the authorities’ decision to put Mirwaiz under house arrest. “Mirwaiz was supposed to chair the meeting of AAC and Hurriyat at Mirwaiz Manzil regarding the March to Martyr’s graveyard at Naqashband Sahib (RA) shrine, Khawaja Bazar on July 13 (Saturday) to pay tributes to martyrs of July 13, 1931. But due to his house arrest he could not reach there. APHC condemned the move,” the joint statement said.

Meanwhile, AAC recalled sacrifices of the Martyrs of July 13, 1931 and paid tributes to them. “The martyrs were the first to raise their voice in J&K against oppressive autocratic rule who sacrificed their life fighting it. Since then people of Kashmir are involved in a struggle for realization of their will and aspirations,” the statement said. “People of Kashmir want their sentiment should be addressed and a peaceful and lasting resolution of Kashmir issue should be found. That will be the best tribute to the martyrs.”