Srinagar, December 30
Life was once again paralyzed as business and other activities came to a grinding halt in support of the separatists’ two-day strike call from today after markets remaining abuzz with shoppers for the past five days in Kashmir, which reeled under unrest since July 9.
Both the factions of the Hurriyat Conference (HC) and Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF), spearheading the agitation since July 9, in its last weekly protest calendar had given strike call for only two days in a week in the last fortnight of December. In its previous calendars, the separatists used to give relaxation over the weekends. The separatists yesterday reiterating its two-day strike call form today and urged people to hold protests after Friday prayers against issuance of domicile certificates to West Pakistan Refugees (WPRs) and Supreme Court’s (SC) verdict on SARFAESI Act. Meanwhile, police said there was no curfew or restrictions in any part of the Kashmir Valley though security forces remained deployed in strength to maintain law and order. However, the markets, which witnessed good business in the city from last five days, were again closed while only few private and public vehicles, besides three-wheelers, could be seen plying on some routes. Even as intense cold weather conditions continued in Kashmir valley, business and other activities were functioning normally from last five days as enthusiastic shoppers flooded the markets to buy warm clothes, besides other essential items, following relaxation by separatists.
But, today all shops were again closed in the main business hubs in civil lines, including Lal Chowk, the nerve centre of the city.
The situation was no different in uptown, where shops and business establishments, which were open for five days till yesterday, were again closed. Only some public and private vehicles were plying on roads, which used to witness traffic jam on Airport road at Rambagh due to traffic diversion.