K administration mulling to ease restrictions across Valley

Congress leaders urge people to stand up against intolerance in Independence Day message

Congress leaders urge people to stand up against intolerance in Independence Day message

After hoisting the national flag on the 73rd Independence Day at Sher-i-Kashmir Stadium, Malik said the "historic changes" will open a new door of development and help various communities promote their languages and cultures in Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh.

Mr Malik, in his address, said the people of Jammu and Kashmir need not to worry about their identity.

The restrictions were imposed on August 5, after the abrogation of the special status given to J-K and the bifurcating the state into two Union Territories.

Twelve of the 22 districts in the state were now functioning normally, and five districts had limited restrictions, Subrahmanyam said at a press conference, according to The Indian Express. Exchange by exchange they will be switching it on.

Principal Secretary in the J-K administration Rohit Kansal had said restrictions were eased out in various parts of Kashmir, including Srinagar city, where peace prevailed on Wednesday.

Another bench, headed by Justice Arun Mishra, on Tuesday had refused to interfere with the Centre and Jammu and Kashmir government imposing several restrictions, saying "reasonable time" be given for bringing normalcy in the sensitive situation and had chose to hear the issue after two weeks.

Strict curfew and communication blackout continued in occupied Kashmir for a ninth day after a security lockdown since last Monday, when India's Hindu-majority government rescinded years of autonomy and gave full control to New Delhi.

Prominent mainstream leaders were not present at the Independence Day function as they have been detained as a precautionary measure. Jammu and Kashmir Police, Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) and the Army were seen carrying out regular patrolling in all the towns and villages of the erstwhile state.

"Periodically, there were relaxations in some of these restrictions to enable the people to come out for their daily requirements", he said.

The chief secretary justified imposition of restrictions in the Valley saying the decisions taken nearly fortnight ago had mandated taking "preventive steps as precautionary measures owing to history of cross border terrorism". "Important factor was credible inputs that such organisations were planning to undertake strikes in J&K in immediate future".

"A few preventive detentions of individuals were also made in accordance with provisions of law to maintain law and order".

The steps consequently taken included restrictions on free movement, prevention of large gatherings, restrictions on telecom connectivity and closure of schools and colleges.