Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti on Wednesday said the order issued by the Jammu and Kashmir administration to lift the two-day curfew imposed in light of the first anniversary of the abrogation of Article 370, was a mere hogwash.
On Tuesday, the Jammu and Kashmir administration announced a complete curfew in Kashmir ahead of the anniversary of the revocation of special status. The Srinagar district magistrate in an order said they have received inputs about separatists and Pakistan-sponsored groups planning to observe August 5 as “Black Day”. But by late evening, the curfew was lifted.
“Last night’s order withdrawing curfew was hogwash,” read a tweet on Mehbooba Mufti’s official account, which is managed by her daughter Iltija Mufti since her detention last year. “When it comes to collective punishment, J&K admin and [the] police prefer not leaving a paper trail and yet ensure people are caged by imposing an unofficial curfew.”
The post had a tweet shared by a journalist that alleged that even “ambulances were not allowed to cross the barbed wire” in Srinagar.
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Even though the curfew imposed in Kashmir was lifted on Tuesday, restrictions on “movement of more than three persons” remains in place. Additionally, a complete lockdown has been enforced in containment zones to stop the spread of the coronavirus. Police and the Central Reserve Police Force personnel have been deployed in heavy numbers across the Valley.
A year ago, the Centre had passed two bills in Parliament that split the state of Jammu and Kashmir into two Union Territories, stripped it of special status under Article 370 and repealed Article 35A, which ensured specific rights and protections to residents of the state. Since then, the region has been placed under the strictest lockdown in its history, with 4G internet services still suspended.
Almost all of the Kashmir Valley’s political leadership, including three former chief ministers – Farooq Abdullah, his son Omar Abdullah and Peoples Democratic Party chief Mehbooba Mufti – were put in detention. Omar Abdullah was released seven months later on March 24 as the Jammu and Kashmir administration revoked his detention order under the Public Safety Act. Farooq Abdullah was released on March 13 but Mufti still remains in detention.