Srinagar: Indian Kashmir witnessed one of its rare ‘normal’ days of this summer on the eve of Diwali, a key festival in Hindu calendar as Syed Ali Shah Geelani led Hurriyat (G) had reviewed his protest-cum-strike asking people to resume their routine activities.
The day was exempted from the purview of Hurriyat’s strike schedule after appeals from a Sikh group urging Geelani to do the same so they could celebrate Diwali hassle free.
Police, however, imposed curfew in the sensitive parts of Srinagar what it called ‘precautionary measure’ in response to a call from Hurriyat (G) for our peaceful post Friday prayers.
“As a precautionary Curfew was imposed in areas under the jurisdictions of police stations Kral Khud, Maisuma, Nowhatta, Safa Kadal, Khanyar, M R Gunj, Rainawari and police posts Qamarwari and Bemina,” a police officer told Agence India Press.
While streets wore a festive look as people thronged the markets to buy essential items, private offices, shops and business establishment s remained open for the second day running in accordance to the Hurriyat’s programme.
All modes of transport could be seen plying on the roads so much so that frequent jams were witnessed at various places giving a tough time to the commuters.
Hindus and Sikhs wore new clothes and visited temples in both urban and rural Kashmir, celebrating the day with much fervor.
No major incident from any area was reported making one of the rare calm days in the last four months that has witnessed 111 civilian deaths allegedly by police and paramilitary and countless curfews and shutdown coupled with valley wide protests against Indian ‘occupation’ of the state.
While Hurriyat (G) that spearheads ongoing ‘Quit Kashmir’ campaign has been announcing protest cum strike calendars ever since a 17 year old boy of Srinagar’s old city was killed by a police tear gas shell on June 11 this year, government has come down heavily on anti-India protesters by clamping curfews for the major part of ‘tumultuous’ period.
Meanwhile, Hurriyat (G) has asked people to observe a civil curfew from tomorrow till the US president, Barrack Obama’s stay in India, who is proposed to arrive in India on Sunday for a four day visit.
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