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  India   All India  28 Oct 2017  Kashmir shuts on troops’ arrival anniversary

Kashmir shuts on troops’ arrival anniversary

Published : Oct 28, 2017, 1:38 am IST
Updated : Oct 28, 2017, 1:38 am IST

Bandh call evokes partial response in parts of Valley.

A jawan stands guard during a strike in Srinagar on Friday. (Photo: H.Q. Naqash)
 A jawan stands guard during a strike in Srinagar on Friday. (Photo: H.Q. Naqash)

Srinagar: The Kashmir Valley was shut on Friday in response to a call issued by separatists on the 70th anniversary of the Indian troops’ arrival in Srinagar to push back the Pakistani tribal raiders.

However, the call evoked only partial response in some parts of the Valley where select shops like groceries and pharmacies were open and private cars, auto-rickshaws and cabs were plying on the roads. The officials said that the rail services remained suspended “as a precautionary measure.” Also, the schools and other educational institutions had declared October 27 as an off day.

The strike call prompted the authorities to step up security across the Valley whereas the J&K police and the central paramilitaries enforced security lock down in sensitive areas of summer capital Srinagar. Earlier, key separatist leaders and activists were placed under house arrest or were taken into preventive custody by the police.

The police also locked the gates of Srinagar’s Jamia Masjid to prevent Friday congregation at the historic place of worship “in the interest of peace and security.” In the afternoon, clashes broke out between stone-hurling groups of youth and the security forces at some places in Srinagar including Soura. The latter fired teargas canisters and swung bamboo sticks to quell the violent mobs, the witnesses said. The first batch of infantry troops from Sikh Regiment’s first battalion was airlifted to Srinagar on October 27, 1947 following Maharaja Hari Singh signed the ‘Instrument of Accession’. The accession was later supported by Kashmir’s legendary leader Sheikh Muhammad Abdullah.

However, separatists, like some historians, allege that sending in troops by New Delhi had been planned days before they actually arrived at the Srinagar airport.

Tags: kashmir valley, indian troops