Srinagar: The curfew and communication blackout continued across the Kashmir valley and five districts of Jammu region on the 28th consecutive day.
According to Kashmir Media Service, the Kashmir valley remains cut off from the rest of the world since August 05 due to continued blockade and suspension of internet, mobile and landline services and closure of TV channels. Publication of local newspapers remains suspended.
The shops and business establishments continue to remain shut and schools, too, remain empty of students amid the authorities’ claims that they had opened the primary, middle and high schools in the territory. The people of the Kashmir valley are facing acute shortage of essential commodities including food, milk and life-saving medicines due to curfew and blockade.
Principal Secretary of occupied Kashmir, Rohit Kansal, confirmed to the media that over 4,500 people have been arrested under the draconian Public Safety Act. These 4,500 persons are among 10,000 Hurriyat leaders, political workers, traders, lawyers, social activists and youth who have been arrested since August 5 when India stripped Jammu and Kashmir of its special status by revoking Article 370 of its constitution.
Meanwhile, a report by Kashmir police confirmed that more than 300 incidents of protests took place over the past three weeks, with Srinagar topping the list with over 160 such incidents reported from the area. The incidents occurred between August 5 and August 7 after the abrogation of the provisions in Article 370 and the bifurcation. Around 22 such incidents took place in Pulwama and 18 in Baramulla, the police report said. On August 17, the Valley recorded 24 such incidents, the highest number of incident in a single day.
Areas of Safakadal, Soura and Nigeen in Srinagar have witnessed maximum protests since the clampdown in the Valley, ahead of the August 5 announcement. At least 30 incidents have been reported from the Safakadal, while Soura has reported 20 and the Nigeen area 15.
On the other hand, an Indian soldier from Tamil Nadu’s Ariyalur district posted in Jammu and Kashmir passed away and his family staged a road blockade in New Delhi, demanding the return of his body. Veeramani, a 32-year-old serving in the army died in the Valley, which is currently under lockdown. However, it is unclear when and how he died. The protest by the families proves that India army is dumping the dead bodies of its slain soldiers and reluctant in sending them back home fearing severe backlash. Times of India citing his family said that the soldier was killed in an encounter with mujahideen.