Srinagar: Restrictions were eased in most areas of Kashmir with barricades being lifted and the movement of people and traffic increasing gradually, but markets remained shut and mobile and internet services suspended for the 18th day on Thursday.
Officials said the situation was peaceful and no untoward incident was reported from anywhere in the Kashmir Valley on Wednesday. In view of the improving situation, the movement of people and traffic was slowly increasing in the city and other district headquarters of the Valley, they said.
Public transport stayed off the roads, but a few inter-district cabs and auto-rickshaws were seen plying in some areas. The attendance of teachers in schools up to middle class-level and employees in government offices was also improving. However, most students stayed away due to the prevailing situation, they added.
The government ordered the reopening of primary schools across the Valley from Monday and middle schools from Wednesday. The officials said restrictions have been eased in several areas of Kashmir, including in most parts of Srinagar.
Barricades have been removed from uptown and civil lines areas of the city as well as from most areas in other districts. However, the deployment of security forces continues to avoid any law and order problems, they said.
The officials said markets were shut in most places in the Valley, as they have been since August 5 when the Centre revoked Jammu and Kashmir's special status under Article 370 and bifurcated the state into two Union territories - Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh.
Shops and other business establishments remain shut though there is no strike call by any separatist group or other organisation.
Mobile services and internet remain suspended, the officials said, adding that landline telephone services have been restored at most places. However, they continue to be suspended in several areas, including in Srinagar's commercial hub of Lal Chowk and Press Enclave.