Shops closed for 3rd day in Kashmir after brief spell of normalcy

File Photo

Srinagar, November 22: Most shops and other business establishments in Kashmir were closed on Friday, the third consecutive day of a Valley-wide shutdown following a brief semblance of normalcy.

On Wednesday, posters warning shopkeepers against opening their shutters as well as public transport operators appeared at several places in the city and elsewhere in the Valley, officials said.

This ended the sense of the last few weeks that life was getting back to normal.

Main markets in the city and most other areas in the Valley were shut and shops did not open even for a few hours in the morning as they had been doing for the past few weeks.

Public transport was also largely off the roads and there were fewer private vehicles than usual, officials said. However, some auto-rickshaws and inter-district cabs were plying.

Jamia Masjid, the grand mosque of Kashmir, was closed for prayers for the 16th consecutive Friday–ever since August 5 when the Centre announced the revoking of Jammu and Kashmir’s special status under Article 370 and its bifurcation into union territories.

Authorities fear that vested interests might exploit large gatherings at the grand mosque to fuel protests, officials said.

Pre-paid mobile phones and all internet services continued to remain suspended since August 5. PTI