Srinagar, May 1
Life returned to normal today in the valley after day-long strike called by separatists against the killings of a civilian in security force firing in the frontier Kashmir district of Kupwara on April 27.
Shops and business establishments were open and traffic was plying on all routes normally in the summer capital, Srinagar, where some busy routes witnessed traffic jam in civil lines and uptown. Work in government offices and banks was also normal. Meanwhile, all schools, barring SP Higher Secondary School (HSS) and MP HSS in Srinagar, were open in the valley though higher educational institutes, including degree colleges, witnessed thin attendance in view of the clashes during the last two weeks between students and security forces. All the shops were open in the main business hubs in civil lines, including historic Lal Chowk, Hari Singh High Street, Gonikhan, Residency Road, Maulana Azad Road, Mahraj Bazar, Batmaloo, Iqbal Park, Dalgate, Regal Chowk and Budshah Chowk. The situation was no different in the uptown, downtown and Shehar-e-Khas (SeK), where shops and business establishments reopened after day-long strike yesterday.
Both the factions of the Hurriyat Conference (HC) and Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF), spearheading the agitation, demanding ‘right to self determination’, had yesterday called for a general strike in the Valley against the killing. Even though situation is limping back to normal, hundreds of security forces remained deployed in north Kashmir’s Kupwara district, where one person was killed and several others were injured when security forces opened fire to disperse demonstrators, who were demanding bodies of two militants gunned down by the Army in an encounter on April 27. Three soldiers, including an officer, were also martyred and five others were injured as the Army foiled the fidayeen attack on its camp in Kupwara.