Govt to conduct review of 2-day ban after May 6
DCs directed to issue travel passes to Sikhs intending to travel to Gurudwara in Uri
The government Saturday relaxed the restriction on civil traffic movement from Srinagar to Baramulla by one day in a week.
“The restriction on civilian movement between Srinagar and Baramulla on NH-44 would now be limited only to Sunday with effect from April 22, 2019. There would be no prohibition on civilian traffic on Wednesday,” a government spokesman said.
He, however, clarified that restriction would continue between Srinagar and Udhampur as earlier.
“These would be reviewed periodically and relaxation will be made as the need for restriction reduces,” the spokesman said.
The decision to ease restrictions on Srinagar-Baramulla stretch of highway was taken completion of two phases of Lok Sabha elections in the State.
“As the requirement of forces was reducing as they are de-inducted, the government has decided to partially relax the restrictions on traffic imposed earlier,” the official spokesman said.
The local administration, he said, would continue to facilitate movement of civilian traffic on the days civil traffic movement is restricted on the highway.
“The administration and police will examine the possibility of allowing public transport of Jammu and Kashmir State Road Transport Corporation to move during restrictions on the highway even on convoy days,” the spokesman said.
He said the government will conduct a complete review of restrictions on the highway after the last phase of Lok Sabha elections on 6 April to examine the need for continuing with the restrictions.
“The restrictions will be reviewed on a real time basis and modifications will be made as necessary in the coming days,” the statement said.
The government have banned civil traffic movement on nearly 270-km long highway from Baramulla to Udhampur for two days in a week from 4 am 5 pm for smooth and safe passage of security convoys after February 14 suicide attack on CRPF bus in Pulwama killed 40 paramilitary personnel.
On the highway days, contingents of government forces are deployed at the intersections of the highway and barricades and concertina wires are erected across the roads to restrict the civil traffic from entering the highway.
The spokesman said Government was monitoring the convoy needs of forces on a real time basis and making attempts to minimize public inconvenience.
Meanwhile, the government directed deputy commissioners of seven districts in Valley to issue travel passes to the Sikhs, intending to visit Uri in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district for Baisaikhi celebration on Sunday.
Sikhs from across the valley are scheduled to visit Gurdwara Chevipatshi Paranpilla at Uri on Sunday, when the prohibition will be in force for civil traffic movement on the highway from Baramulla to Udhampur.
The Divisional Commissioner Kashmir has written to Deputy Commissioners of Srinagar, Pulwama, Budgam, Shopian, Anantnag, Kulgam and Baramulla to issue passes to the intending Sikh pilgrims to facilitate the movement of their vehicles on the highway.
“I’m directed to request to kindly issue necessary passes in favour of the intending persons from Sikh community to facilitate the movement of their vehicles on highway on scheduled date after observing all necessary formalities,” reads a communique issued by Assistant Commissioner with Divisional commissioner Kashmir, Qazi Irfan to the deputy commissioners.
Apprehending the inconvenience during the highway restriction, All Parties Sikh Coordination Committee (APSCC) Chairman, Jagmohan Raina had written to the divisional administration for issuance of the travel passes to Sikhs, scheduled to celebrate Baisaikhi in Uri.
Raina said people from various districts travel to Uri for Baisaikhi, the occasion celebrated by Sikhs in three series.
He said on April 14, when the highway restriction was in force Sikhs from the districts could not visit Chatti Padshahi, Rainawari in Srinagar to attend Baisaikhi celebrations.
“Compared to last year, only 50 percent people turned up at Rainwari due to highway ban,” Raina said
He appealed authorities to treat turbans as identity of Sikhs and allow them travel to Uri without any inconvenience tomorrow.