Forces restrain themselves from action despite provocative slogans
Thousands of Kashmiris, locked down in their houses for over a week, on Monday celebrated Eid, their first festivity after the revocation of Article 370, without speaking to their loved ones or seeing each other following “unprecedented” clampdown in the Valley since August 5.
The authorities in Kashmir did allow worshippers to converge at nearby mosques, but most revered places such as like Hazratbal Shrine, Idgah, remained out of bounds.
In the Valley, clashes broke out in some sensitive places, but barring minor injuries to a few people, the overall situation remained peaceful. However, in Jammu region, pro-Azadi slogans were raised by worshippers while they stepped out of Jamia Masjid in Kishtwar in the presence of security personnel and senior officers, including Deputy Commissioner Angrez Singh Rana.
However DC could not be contacted due to suspension of telephone services to confirm these reports.
According to eyewitness reports, “over 2,000 worshippers were present in the mosque; and soon after the prayers were over, a large number of them stepped out shouting provocative slogans and pro-Azadi slogans in Kishtwar”. Prayers were not allowed in traditional Chougan Parade ground by the local authorities.
The paramilitary forces deployed in the area, handled the situation very tactfully and despite severe provocation refrained from taking any action against them.
Official sources claimed notorious elements were identified by the police in the crowd and action as per rule of law will follow against them in due course of time.
Meanwhile, National Security Adviser Ajit Doval, who is camping in Srinagar, conducted an aerial survey of Srinagar and monitored the situation. Several drones cameras and helicopters were seen flying over Srinagar skies to keep a close tabs on the ground zero.
According to SP Pani, Inspector General of Police, Kashmir range, “The overall situation in Kashmir remained peaceful barring minor incidents of law and order reported from parts of Srinagar”.
He said after Eid prayers people were dispersed in a peaceful manner.
Meanwhile, the Jammu & Kashmir Police rebutted media reports that claimed involvement of policemen in a firing incident.
“This malicious content is strongly rebutted. Matter has been taken up with Twitter for action,” tweeted the official handle of the Kashmir Zone police late on Monday.
In Jammu, prayers were held in a peaceful atmosphere amid tight security arrangements. A large number of members belonging to the Gujjar community celebrated Eid holding tricolour in their hands at the Jeora farms, near the International border in RS Pura area.
Jammu’s Divisional Commissioner Sanjeev Verma told The Pioneer, “Eid prayers were offered peacefully in all the 10 districts of Jammu region.” He said after the prayers, worshippers dispersed peacefully at all the places.
Officials said 5,000 people came to Eidgah, the main venue, and offered prayers amid strict security.
Earlier in Srinagar, Principal Secretary to Government of J&K and Government Spokesperson Rohit Kansal maintained that Eid prayers have been offered in all districts of Kashmir as well in Jammu region. All necessary arrangements were made to facilitate the people for offering prayers at mosques and other places.
Addressing the mediapersons in Srinagar, Rohit Kansal said that people in large numbers came out to offer Eid prayers in their local areas and mosques in entire Kashmir division.
He said that in Srinagar district, hundreds of people visited various mosques mainly including Maqdoom Sahab, Dastgeer Sahab, Iqra Masjid and other places to offer Eid namaz. All other districts of Kashmir division also saw movement of people to the mosques for offering prayers.
Tuesday, 13 August 2019 | Mohit Kandhari | Jammu
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