Restrictions were lifted from most areas of Kashmir, except some parts of Srinagar, even as the stalemate in the Valley following abrogation of Article 370 entered its 36th day with schools closed and public transport off the roads, officials said.
The restrictions have been lifted from most areas of the valley, but continued in parts of Srinagar — in the interior areas and in the jurisdiction of Maisuma police station of the city, the officials said.
They said barricades were removed from the commercial hub of Lal Chowk and adjoining areas a day after they were sealed off by placing concertina wires at all entry points.
However, the officials said, security forces continued to be deployed to maintain law and order. Severe restrictions were re-imposed in parts of the valley on Sunday to prevent any procession in the city and elsewhere in the valley on the eighth day of Muharram.
The curbs on the movement of people in some parts of the valley are imposed every year on the eight and the tenth day of Muharram to prevent any processions. Restrictions were first imposed across Kashmir on August 5 when the Centre announced its decision to abrogate Article 370 of the Constitution and bifurcate the state into two Union territories.
The restrictions were lifted in phases from many parts of the valley as the situation improved with passage of time. However, authorities have been imposing restrictions in vulnerable areas of the valley every Friday, apprehending that vested interests might exploit the large gatherings at big mosques and shrines to fuel protests.
Friday prayers have not been allowed at any of the major mosques or shrines in the valley for the past one month now