March 2020 News

On Janata Curfew, Kashmir Witnesses Complete Lockdown

22 March 2020
Rising Kashmir
Javid Ahmad

Srinagar: Kashmir Sunday observed an exemplary civil curfew amid complete lockdown for fourth consecutive day in a bid to stop deadly coronavirus spread in the Valley. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had appealed people to observe janta curfew or civil curfew on Sunday, to ensure social distancing to help stop coronavirus spread threat. Authorities deployed extra contingents of police and paramilitary forces in Srinagar and other parts of Valley to enforce the curfew. People completely stayed indoors in Srinagar and other district headquarters including villages. Roads and market places wore a deserted look as non-essential businesses and transport service including private vehicle remained non-operational. Local train service between Baramulla and Banihal remained shut for 4th straight day. However, drug stores operated as usual in the Valley. In Srinagar and other sensitive locations of the Valley, forces laid barricades and erected concertina wire to enforce curfew and disallow any public movement and assembly. Lal Chowk, the commercial nerve centre in the city, remained out of bounds for public with forces personnel standing guard at every entry and exit points. On Saturday Inspector General of Police Kashmir, Vijay Kumar, had said there will be extra deployment of forces in Kashmir to enforce curfew as Valley has a history that in any situation no restrictions had been complied without deployment of forces. The curbs on public movement and assembly under section 144 crpc were first imposed in Kashmir on March 18 after a 67-year-old woman from Khanyar area tested positive of coronavirus, making her a first Covid-19 case in Kashmir. So far, there have been positive cases of COVID-19 in J&K - three form Jammu and one from Kashmir. Although people observed civil curfew in valley, there was, however, no clapping or Thali (utensil) beating by people during curfew as had been appealed by Prime Minister Modi to applause those people involved in fighting coronavirus.