Srinagar | The curfew-like restrictions, imposed in the Shehar-e-Khas (SeK) and downtown along with parts of civil lines, including the historic Lal Chowk for the past three days, were lifted this morning. Hundreds of vendors have also put up their stall at Sunday Market in the heart of the city. Restrictions were imposed on the morning of February 9, when the Separatists had called for a strike on the fourth death anniversary of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru, who was hanged and buried on this day in Delhi’s Tihar jail.
On February 10, restrictions continued to foil the separatist march to the office of the United Nations Military Observers Group for India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP) at Sonawar.
Restrictions also continued yesterday on the death anniversary of Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) founder Mohammad Maqbool Bhat, who too was hanged and buried in Tihar jail in 1984. Both the factions of the Hurriyat Conference (HC) and JKLF, jointly spearheading the agitation, demanding right to self-determination, had called for strike, protests and marches in the valley. All the road blocks and other restrictions in the downtown and SeK have been lifted, though security forces and state police personnel remained deployed to prevent any demonstration.
The main gates of historic Jamia masjid, where no prayers could be offered for the past three days due to restrictions, were also open today. Security forces deployed around the Mosque, including Jamia market, since February 9, have also been withdrawn.
Main roads near the historic Masjid, which were blocked with barbed wire by security forces, were also open today. Due to restrictions, no Friday prayers could also be offered in the Mosque, where chairman of moderate Hurriyat Conference (HC) is addressing Friday congregations every week. Restrictions in Maisuma, stronghold of JKLF, in the heart of the city have also been lifted, though security forces remained deployed in the civil lines.
The Amira Kadal bridge, connecting Hari Singh High Street (HSHS) with historic Lal Chowk, which also remained closed with barbed wire from both sides, was through for normal movement today. Meanwhile, hundreds of vendors, selling from simple needle to blankets, electronic goods and carpets, have put up their stall on the three-km Sunday market from Radio Kashmir, Srinagar crossing to Hari Singh High Street (HSHS), including Gantaghat and Lal Chowk, the nerve the summer capital. Last Sunday, the market was affected due to snowfall and waterlogged roads.