SRINAGAR: A partial to complete shutdown was observed amid renewed tensions in Kashmir Valley on Sunday to commemorate the seventh death anniversary of Parliament attack convict Muhammad Afzal Guru. Guru, a resident of Doabgah suburb of Kashmir’s north-western town of Sopore, was hanged in Delhi’s Tihar jail on February 9, 2013.
While shops and other businesses including weekly fleet market, popularly known as ‘Sunday Market’, in Srinagar remained closed, public transport services were badly affected here and elsewhere in the Valley in response to the strike call issued by Mirwaiz Umar-led faction of the separatist Hurriyat Conference and outlawed Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF). However, private cars and other vehicles and auto-rickshaws were seen plying as usual across the Valley. Also, shops, mainly groceries and pharmacies, were open at places, reports pouring in here said. The security across the Valley was beefed up further on the eve of Guru and Bhat anniversaries. The authorities said that the day passed off peacefully and claimed the strike calls were largely ignored by the people. DGP Dilbag Singh had earlier said that the police and other security forces were fully prepared to foil any attempt at disturbing peace. It was for the first time since August 5 last year- when J&K was stripped of its special status and split up into two Union Territories – that separatist organisations issued strike calls.