The Srinagar administration has imposed restrictions in many parts of the city on Friday to prevent protests against the growing incidents of “braid chopping” in the Valley, IANS reported.

Restrictions under Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure will be in force in areas that fall under the jurisdiction of Khanyar, Nowhatta, Rainawari, MR Gunj, Safa Kadal, Maisuma and Krakkhud police stations in Srinagar.

“These restrictions have been imposed to maintain law and order in the city,” a police officer said. Mobile internet services have also been suspended in Srinagar and Budgam districts, ANI reported.

The administration has been under pressure to solve the cases of braid chopping in the Valley as separatists have alleged that the security forces are behind these incidents. The Valley reported its first braid chopping in September, about a month after Jammu had reported several similar incidents. In all, according to the police, 35 cases of braid chopping have been reported from Kashmir so far and 192 from Jammu division.

On October 2, Riyaz Naikoo, field operational commander of the militant group Hizbul Mujahedeen, released an audio statement saying the chopping of women’s braids was aimed at “weakening” the separatist movement.

On October 1, the Jammu and Kashmir Police had doubled the reward to Rs 6 lakh for information on incidents of braid chopping in the Valley. “The incidents seem similar to what was happening in the rest of the country, but here, there is a chance that separatists and terrorists might use the incidents to their benefit,” Director General of Police SP Vaid had said.

Similar complaints were filed in other North Indian states in August.