Tensions have intensified in India occupied Kashmir and the state has been placed under lockdown. Former CMs Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti have been placed under house arrest, reports Times of India. The Indian government has deployed thousands of troops to the region. The Kashmir lockdown is raising significant political questions.
Government of Jammu and Kashmir releases an official statement
The government of Jammu and Kashmir has issued an official statement saying: “As per the order there shall be no movement of public and all educational institutions shall also remain closed.” The state is currently under central rule. The order states that security restrictions will be applicable in the district of Srinagar. Last week, the Indian government deployed 10,000 troops to the region and passed an unprecedented order asking tourists and Hindu pilgrims to exit the Himalayan valley.
“I believe I’m being placed under house arrest from midnight tonight and the process has already started for other mainstream leaders. No way of knowing if this is true but if it is then I’ll see all of you on the other side of whatever is in store,” Omar Abdullah said late Sunday night, on Twitter.
The centre might alter Article 370
The people of Jammu and Kashmir are afraid that the centre is planning to make significant ‘demographic changes’ in the Muslim-majority region. They believe that the central government will scrap Article 370 that grants the region of Jammu and Kashmir special status.
Internet services have been shut down
Currently, a total of nearly 700,000 Indian soldiers are deployed in India-administered Kashmir. Fearing the worst, locals in Srinagar were seen forming long queues outside petrol stations, food and medical stores, and ATMs in the main city of Srinagar. Mobile internet services have also been shut down.
While citizens were gearing up for the Muslim festival of Eid-ul-Azha on August 12, the latest lockdown has sent the state into a frenzy. Residents are now working on stockpiling essential rations and fuel. According to Al-Jazeera, other government orders being issued in the last week include directions to the doctors to remain prepared, to non-local students to leave for home, and district administrators to remain on standby.