Restrictions in Srinagar ahead of PM Modi visit

Srinagar: Restrictions were imposed in some areas of summer capital Srinagar and senior separatist leaders were placed under house arrest Friday, a day when Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrives here on his maiden visit.

“Restrictions have been imposed in five police station areas of Khanyar, Rainawari, Nowhatta, M.R. Gunj and Safa Kadal today (Friday) to maintain law and order in the city,” a police official told IANS here.

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Senior separatist leaders including Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umer Farooq, Muhammad Yasin Malik and Shabir Ahmad Shah have been placed under house arrest in Srinagar.

Separatists have called for a protest shutdown in the Valley Friday to coincide with the prime minister’s visit.

Shops, educational institutions, public transport and other businesses remained closed in Srinagar and other major towns of the Valley in response to the separatist call.

Banks, post offices and government offices, however, functioned normally in the Valley albeit with lesser attendance due to non-availability of public transport.

The prime minister arrives in winter capital Jammu from where he will take a helicopter ride to Katra town in Reasi district.

After inaugurating the 25 kilometre long rail link between Katra, the base town of Mata Vaishnoo Devi Shrine, and Udhampur town, Modi will fly to summer capital Srinagar.

Modi’s engagements in the Valley include addressing a Sainik Sammelan in Badami Bagh cantonment in Srinagar, chairing a high level security review meeting and a luncheon interaction with the state Governor N.N. Vohra.

In the afternoon, the Modi is scheduled to inaugurate the 240 megawatt NHPC hydro-power project near Uri town of north Kashmir Baramulla district.

The prime minister will fly back to New Delhi in the evening.