Shutdown affects normal life for 42nd day in Kashmir

KT NEWS SERVICE. Dated: 9/16/2019 11:56:42 AM

SRINAGAR, Feb 15: Normal life continued to remain affected in Kashmir Valley for the 42nd consecutive day today in view of the spontaneous general strike and restrictions in some areas.
The spontaneous general strike is observed since August 5 when the articles 370 and 35A were abrogated and the J&K state divided into two union territories.
Because of the strike the shops and other business establishments are closed and public transport is off the roads. However, a number of private vehicles ply on some of the roads.
The authorities have lifted restrictions from most of the areas and those are reimposed in case of any trouble. Heavy deployment of the security forces has been made since August 5. They stop vehicles and search those and frisk passengers at check points.
The weekly flea market opened in Srinagar on Sunday as several vendors put up their stalls on the TRC Chowk-Polo View axis, the officials said.
They said people from many areas of the valley thronged the market to buy items.
Security forces were deployed along the axis to keep an eye on miscreants who might try to force vendors to wind up the stalls, the officials said.
They said the movement of private cars was going on unhindered in the city and elsewhere in the valley, while few auto-rickshaws and inter-district cabs were also seen plying in some areas.
No separatist group has called for strike but posters have been appearing in some areas asking the people to observe strike. Police has arrested a number of persons in some areas for pasting posters.
The authorities recently reopened schools up to high school level but students do not turn up. However, the staffers in most of the schools do attend to their duties.
The internet and mobile phone services are blocked. The landline phone service was restored recently but the subscribers in most areas allege that they cannot receive of make international calls on their phones and they feel blocking of such calls. Earlier, such facilities were available.
Reports indicate that mobile phone operators have suffered a loss of over Rs 90 crore since August 5 and the business community has suffered a loss of over Rs 40,000 crores since then.
There were some reports of the government considering restoration of the mobile phones now but till date the facility has not been restored. People have been enormously suffering due to internet blockade but the authorities have said there are no chances of restoring such facilities on the ground that internet is being misused by Pakistan to incite people here.



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