SRINAGAR: Curfew like restrictions have been imposed in Shehar-e-Khas (SeK) and downtown in Srinagar as a precautionary measure to prevent any law and order problem since early this morning.
All gate of historic Jamia Masjid, stronghold of chairman of moderate Hurriyat Conference (HC), have also been closed and a large number of security forces and state police personnel remained deployed in the area. Officials said that restriction under Section 144 CrPC were imposed in the areas falling under five police stations in the SeK and down town Srinagar since early this morning to prevent any violence.
However, the situation was entirely different on the ground as repeated announcements were being made through public address system fitted on vehicles that curfew has been imposed since this morning. “People are requested to remain indoor as curfew restrictions have been imposed,” the announcement said.State police personnel and security forces, wearing bulletproof jackets, helmets and holding automatic weapons in their hands have been deployed to strictly implement the restrictions.
The entire otherwise busy Nallahmar Road from Khanyar to Qamarwari have been closed for any movement. Main and link roads were closed with barbed wire and by parking bullet vehicles in the middle. People of these areas alleged that milkmen and vegetable vendors were not allowed to enter from outskirts by the security forces with the result they had to drink black tea and go without any roti as bakery shops also remained closed due to restrictions. However, the Safa Kadal Road to SK Institute of Medical Sciences (SKIMS) through Eidgah was open though only patients and ambulances were being allowed after checking their documents.
All gates of historic Jamia Masjid remained closed. Security forces had been deployed in the Jamia Market and outside, preventing people from going inside. A group of journalists was turned back by security forces at Gojwara. “We have instructions not to allow anyone from entering the areas where restrictions have been imposed, security forces said and urged media person to take any other route,” officials said. Similar situation was witnessed at other places in the downtown and SeK, where additional security forces had been deployed since early this morning. However, there was no restriction in the old city, civil lines and uptown, where business establishments remained closed due to strike called by Kashmir Traders and Manufacturers Federation (KTMF) in protest against the arrest of leaders of the organisation during protests against the GST.