July 2017 News

Businesses Shut; Restrictions In Srinagar Parts

5 July 2017

Srinagar: The district administration Srinagar on Wednesday imposed restrictions in downtown areas as precautionary measures while the traders across the Valley observed complete shutdown against the implementation of Goods and Services Tax (GST) in the state. Restrictions under section 144 were imposed in downtown areas falling under the jurisdiction of five Police Stations including Khanyar, Nowhatta, Rainawari, MR Gunj and Safakadal. The restrictions were imposed in view of the protests called by the Jammu and Kashmir Coordination Committee (JKCC), a group of traders and civil societies against 'highhandedness of the government' and GST implementation in JK. The authorities had deployed a large contingent of police and paramilitary CRPF troopers on roads in the restriction bound areas, who had erected concertina wires on the roads to halt the vehicular movement in the areas. All the shops, business establishments and other establishments across the Valley including the business Hub Lal Chowk were closed today in mark of a protest against the GST implementation in Jammu and Kashmir. Meanwhile, to press the government over their demands, the JKCC today held a sit-in at Clock Tower (Ganta Ghar). Chanting anti-GST slogans, the traders JKCC members demanded government to 'stop infringing the special status of JK'. The protesting JKCC members said that they won't allow the government to take any step, which would be against the people's aspirations. 'We are ready to sacrifice our lives to safeguard the special status of JK,' they said. 'Our state has its own constitution and why the government is mulling to implement any other law here. The imminent move of the government is against the aspirations of the people here and the incumbent regime must take any step, which would accommodate the aspirations of people,' JKCC said. However, Police swung into action and detained scores of JKCC members including Muhammad Sadiq Baqal, Zahoor Budshah, Hilal Ahmad Mandoo and others. The traders' groups also held a protest outside the Assembly after the House moved resolution on 101st amendment to facilitate Goods and Services Tax (GST) rollout in the state. The protests, led by local MLA Engineer Rashid of the Awami Itihad Party, turned violent after the police tried to disrupt the march. The MLA is against implementation of a standard Indian taxation law in the state which enjoys a special status under the Constitution. Rashid has been detained by the police to control the situation. Rashid has been vociferously opposing the implementation of GST in Jammu and Kashmir. the state government moved the resolution seeking suggestions from the lawmakers on how to implement GST to ensure that the special status under Article 370 of the Constitution is not affected. However, Rashid said, 'The GST crisis has exposed Indian claims that Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India. Jammu and Kashmir is not India and India is not Jammu and Kashmir. The state is neither an integral part nor Pakistan's jugular vein, but the territory on both sides including Gilgit-Baltistan is a disputed territory and hollow claims cannot make it an integral part of anything.'