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Kashmir observes shutdown on 63rd Republic Day

January 26, 2012 - Srinagar

Srinagar, the summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir, celebrated the 63rd Republic Day on Thursday, despite separatists calling for a shutdown.

Hardline separatist leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani called for the shutdown.

Heavy security was deployed across Srinagar and other major towns in the state to foil any attempt by militants to disturb the Republic Day celebrations, which were held at the Bakshi Stadium in the heart of Srinagar city.

The state government imposed a curfew, turning Srinagar into fortress.Mobile service operators blocked services for a few hours. Vehicle movement was also restrictive, while most shops remained closed.

"We had to face a lot of difficulties, as from home to this place, police questioned me around ten times as to where are you going?, why are you going? So, one had to face problems in all aspects," said Naveed Ahmad, a resident.

Troops in full battle gear patrolled the deserted streets of Srinagar city, whilst sharpshooters watched from rooftops.


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