No curfew, no shutdown, Kashmir gets a day’s breather

August 8th, 2010 - 11:34 am ICT by IANS  

Srinagar, Aug 8 (IANS) Curfew was lifted from the entire Kashmir Valley Sunday as markets and banks opened after 10 days of restrictions and separatist-sponsored shutdowns.
“Curfew has been lifted from the Valley and there are no restrictions in place anywhere. We are closely monitoring the situation,” a police officer told IANS here.

Despite being a public holiday, shops, banks and post offices opened early and public transport was also seen plying.

Authorities Saturday evening lifted curfew from north Kashmir Ganderbal district, central Badgam district and also from Handwara town. Curfew was also lifted from nine police station areas in Srinagar city.

“I have spent all the money I had during the last 10 days. I asked a bank official if I could withdraw some money from my savings account and he said the bank would remain open today (Sunday). That is a big relief,” said Nasir Ahmad, a retired engineer living in Srinagar’s Lal Bazar area.

The hardline Hurriyat group headed by Syed Ali Geelani has asked people to resume normal activities Sunday and buy essential supplies in sufficient quantity as the group has issued another resistance calendar calling for protests and shutdowns beginning Monday.

“Normalcy has become an aberration in the Valley while curfews and separatist shutdowns are the order of the day,” said Nisar Hussain, a retired engineer.

The Kashmir Valley has been on the boil for more than 50 days due to violent protests against civilians being killed in firing by security forces.

As many as 49 civilians have been killed in firing by security forces in the cycle of violence that began June 11.

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