Kashmir shuts on January 26

A complete shutdown was observed across Kashmir on Thursday to mark the January 26 while as no untoward incident was reported from anywhere.
Kashmir shuts on January 26
Photo: Habib Naqash/GK

A complete shutdown was observed across Kashmir on Thursday to mark the January 26 while as no untoward incident was reported from anywhere.

For only the second time in more than a decade, mobile phone and mobile internet services were not disrupted as part of the security drill for January 26 and August 15 celebrations in Kashmir.

All commercial establishments, shops and private institutions remained shut. Roads wore a deserted look and only security vehicles could be seen plying. 

The strike call was given by the joint resistance leadership, who had asked people to mark January 26 as "black day." Militant groups had also called for a complete strike. The call evoked total response.

Witnesses said there was heavy deployment of police and paramilitary forces in old Srinagar areas and pedestrians were asked to show their identity cards by the forces. 

However, old city residents said that there were no curfew like restrictions as heavy snowfall was going on. "As compared to previous years, there were no curbs this time around. People in small numbers were moving around," said Imtiyaz Ahmed of Nowhatta area of old Srinagar.

Forces vehicles were deployed in Lal Chowk while as only security vehicles were seen heading towards the main venue for R-Day parade —Bakshi Satdium, where Divisional Commissioner Kashmir Basser Khan unfurled the tri-colour and took salute of the parade. 

Reports said that all the official functions passed off peacefully including those held at various district headquarters. 

Police sources said that elaborate security arrangements were in place to ensure smooth conduct of official functions in district headquarters.

Security agencies had already declared a high alert in view of the inputs that "militants may disrupt the official functions of January 26."

Director General of Police Dr S P Vaid said the day passed off peacefully and there was no untoward incident reported from anywhere in the State. "All the official functions remained smooth and peaceful," he said. "No militancy related incident was reported from any part of the State."

He said the credit for the peaceful conduct of the R-Day functions goes to various security agencies including police, who remained alert despite cold weather and snowfall.

He said amid inputs, elaborate security arrangements were put in place to thwart any possible militant strikes. 

In Srinagar, especially at the vital security installations, 30 to 35 CCTVs were activated while as CCTVs were also activated at the district headquarters to keep an eye on the suspects.

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