Union Home Minister Amit Shah will visit Kashmir on October 23 for the first time since the abrogation of Article 370. The Centre revoked Jammu and Kashmir’s special status and bifurcated the erstwhile state into two union territories – Ladakh and J&K -- on August 5 in 2019.
Shah is likely to visit Kashmir when the first international flight from Srinagar to Sharjah will take off.
Ahead of the union minister’s three-day visit to the Valley, which has rocked by a recent spate of civilian killings, security has been beefed up, officials said.
Here are the security measures taken by the authorities ahead of Amit Shah’s visit:
- A thick security cover has been thrown around the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) office at Jawahar Nagar in the city where Shah is likely to pay a visit, they said. Similarly, roads leading to Sher-i-Kashmir International Convention Centre (SKICC) have been made off-limits for three days from October 23 as the home minister is expected to attend an event there, they added.
- An additional deployment of security forces has been made across the valley, especially in Srinagar.
- Fifty companies of additional paramilitary forces are being inducted into the valley in view of the recent incidents of civilian killings, reported news agency PTI citing official sources.
- Bunkers manned by paramilitary Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) have come up in several areas of the city as well in other parts of the valley, the officials said. They said the aim of constructing new bunkers and putting more personnel on the ground was to cut the free movement of militants.
- Barricades have been put up on the roads across the valley, especially in the city, while frisking and checking of people has been intensified.
- The mobile internet services on a dozen towers -- mostly in the areas where non-local labourers were killed in the past week -- were snapped three days ago as part of the security measures, according to officials.
- The officials said police have started stringent checking of documents of two-wheelers plying on the roads and many have been seized by police. However, IGP, Kashmir zone, Vijay Kumar had said these steps were purely related to terror violence. "Seizing some bikes and shutting down of internet of some towers is purely related to #terror #violence. It has nothing to do with visit of the Hon'ble HM," he has tweeted.(With inputs from PTI)