Strike in Kashmir hits normal life


By News Desk | Srinagar

Normal life was hit in Kashmir Valley on the strike called by the Muttahida Majlis-e-Mushawarat (MMM), a coordination committee of separatist groups. Though shops and private and government schools remained closed in most parts of Srinagar city, private transport plied smoothly and on many routes stray passenger buses were seen plying.

The amalgam had called for a complete shut down on Thursday in protest against the denial from the Central Government to return the mortal remains of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru and Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) founder Mohammad Maqbool Butt.

All the shops, petrol stations and business establishments remained shut in city centre Lal Chowk, Maisuma, Badshah Chowk, Hari Singh High Street, Goni Khan, Maharaja Bazar, Iqbal Park, Saraibala and in down town parts of Srinagar.

Most of the shops were open in uptown areas of Srinagar including Jawahar Nagar, Raj Bagh, Solina, Ram Bagh, Sonawar and Batawara. Three-wheelers plied in Srinagar as usual.

Police and Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel were deployed at several places in the city to thwart any protests. Nowhatta, Bohri Kadal, Kawdara, Gojwara and many other parts of old city wore a deserted look. Stray incidents of stone pelting occurred in many parts of Down Town including Safa Kadal and Kadi Kadal.

Complete shutdown was observed by people in South Kashmir’s Anantnag, Kulgam, Shopian and Pulwama districts. Tral, Panpore, Kakapora, Bijbehara, Khanbal also remained shut.

Stray incidents of stone pelting were reported from some parts of Kulgam. Scores of youth pelted stones on police and CRPF personnel in Bijbehara. However no one was injured in these clashes. Youth also resorted to stone-pelting in Qazigund.

Life was also affected in North Kashmir’s Bandipora, Baramulla, Ganderbal and Kupwara districts. Other towns of North Kashmir including Handwara and Kangan also witnessed strike, however in some parts of Ganderbal district shops and business establishments were open.

Strike call had no effect on tourist vehicles as dozens of vehicles carrying tourists to hill stations of Sonamarg, Pahalgam and Gulmarg moved as usual. The vehicular traffic on the Srinagar-Jammu highway also remained normal. CNS

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