Strike evokes partial response in J&K

Strike evokes partial response in J&K

A strike called by separatists, including both factions of the Hurriyat Conference, to protest against the landing of the Army in Kashmir on October 27, 1947, to repulse an invasion by Pakistan-backed tribal militia, evoked partial response on Sunday.

The day passed peacefully in Srinagar and other major towns of Jammu and Kashmir. Authorities had deployed contingents of police and CRPF to prevent any demonstration.

While most shops and other business, like fuel stations and private offices, remained closed in the city and major towns of the valley because it was a Sunday, there was no impact on the weekly flea market in the heart of the city here. Though public transport was off the roads, private cars, auto rickshaws and cabs plied normally.

Reports said hundreds of policemen donning riot gear were deployed in the sensitive areas of Srinagar and other towns to thwart any possible protest.

In the Old City area, security personnel patrolled the lanes and bylanes. In Nowhatta, Safakadal, Rajouri Kadal, Nawakadal, Zainakadal, Rainawari, MR Gunj and other places, the forces took extra precautions by putting more men on the ground, added reports.

A senior police official stated that the day passed off peacefully, saying, “No untoward incident took place today.”

The strike had been called by both factions of the Hurriyat Conference, led by Syed Ali Shah Geelani and Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, and supported by United Jihad Council chief Syed Salahuddin, based in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.

It was on October 27, 1947, that independent India's army undertook its first military operation in Jammu and Kashmir, a day after local royal Maharaja Hari Singh signed the instrument of accession with the Union of India, to repulse Pakistani tribal raiders from the region.

Separatist have been calling strikes on this day every year since the eruption of militancy in the state in 1989.

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