September 26, 2019

Business establishments, schools, train service remain shut in Kashmir

Srinagar: Business establishments and educational institutions remained closed while train, mobile and internet services were suspended in Kashmir valley since August 5, when centre scrapped Article 370 and 35 A, besides dividing the state into two Union Territories.

However, there was no curfew in any part of the valley, where restrictions under Section 144 CrPC continued to prevent any law and order problem.

Meanwhile, shops and business establishments function for about two hours every day from 0700 hrs to 0900 hrs in summer capital, Srinagar, including historic Lal Chowk, the nerve centre of the city. People were seen making purchases for wedding — including cloth, shoes, dry fruits and other gift items — besides essentials and other articles. The fruit and vegetable mandis in the city also function early in the morning till 0800 hrs.

However, later all activities come to a halt before the deadline of 0900 hrs. Interestingly, some bank branches were also seen functioning for few hours in the morning before shutting down again.

People in the downtown continue to suffer as hardly any such activity was witnessed and security forces remained deployed in strength to maintain law and order.

All gates of historic Jamia masjid in the down town remained closed to prevent assemble of people since August 5. There was no change in the situation and a large number of Central Paramilitary Forces (CPMF) remained deployed in the Jamia Market and outside the Masjid to maintain law and order. No prayers, including on Fridays, were offered in the Masjid, stronghold of chairman of moderate Hurriyat Conference (HC) Mirwaiz Moulvi Omar Farooq due to restrictions.

Life remained crippled as shops and business establishments remained closed in summer capital, Srinagar and its adjoining areas since August 5 while public transport was off the roads on Thursday. The State Road Transport Corporation (SRTC) buses also remained off the roads. However, private vehicles were seen plying on city roads. Three wheelers could also be seen plying early in the morning in some uptown and civil line areas before going off the roads as the day progress.

Reports received here said that life remained paralysed as there was also no change in the situation elsewhere in the valley, where all shops and business establishments remained closed and traffic was off the roads due to strike since August 5. However, private vehicles were seen plying on some routes.

Business and other activities remained crippled in south Kashmir districts of Anantnag, Kulgam, Pulwama, Shopian. There was also no change in the situation in Kupwara, Baramulla, Bandipora, Pattan, Sopore, Handwara and Ajas in north Kashmir. Reports of shutdown were also received from central Kashmir districts of Ganderbal and Budgam.

Meanwhile, the railway department has suffered a loss of about 1.60 crore due to continued suspension of train service between Baramulla in south Kashmir to Banihal in Jammu region since August 5.

Though authorities resumed landline telephone service, mobile and internet service of all Cellular companies remained suspended since August 5, badly hitting professional, media persons, students besides traders and government departments in the valley.

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