Darbar move: Civil Secretariat closes in Srinagar

The civil secretariat, which is the seat of Jammu and Kashmir government, closed here on Friday as part of the biannual ‘Darbar move’, a practice started by Maharaja Gulab Singh in 1872, officials said.

Civil Secretariat and other Darbar move offices, which observe a five-day week, closed here on Friday, while the offices observing a six-day week will close on Saturday, they said.

All the offices will reopen at Jammu on November 9.  The civil secretariat and other Darbar move offices function in Srinagar for six months of summer and in Jammu for the remaining six months of the year. The practice was started by the maharaja 145 years ago to escape the extreme heat of Jammu during summers and biting cold of winters in Srinagar. However, the practice was continued by elected governments post-1947 in order to provide access to people of both regions — by turns — to the seat of power in the state.