SRINAGAR: Restrictions were lifted from most parts of Kashmir on Wednesday and some areas in Srinagar city witnessed an increased presence of private transport leading to traffic jams but schools remained closed and public transport was off the roads, officials said.
The city witnessed increased movement of private vehicles on Wednesday leading to traffic jams at several places on the Karan Nagar-Batamaloo-Lal Chowk-Dalgate axis, the officials said.
They said few auto rickshaws and inter-district cabs were also seen plying in some areas of the city. The officials said restrictions have been lifted from most areas of the valley, but security forces continued to be deployed to maintain law and order.
The restrictions were re-imposed in parts of the valley on Tuesday to prevent any procession in the city and elsewhere in the valley on the tenth 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 the Kashmir on 5 August 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, the 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.
The efforts of the state government to open schools have not borne any fruit as parents continued to keep children at home due to apprehensions about their safety.
Most of the top-level politicians have been taken into custody while mainstream leaders including three former chief ministers Farooq Abdullah, Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti have also been either detained or placed under house arrest.