|Early Times Report|
Anantnag, Nov 21: A cinema hall in south Kashmir town here was reopened by CRPF after 30 years of shutdown post terrorist attacks.
A senior CRPF officer said the cinema hall was reopened to provide some relief to the people from the mental stress. "There is no entertainment available to the people, particularly youths, in the Anantnag district," he said, adding it was decided to at least open the cinema hall, where latest and old films will be screened.
CRPF, housed in the Heaven Cinema Hall in the Anantnag town, opened it after 30 years.
He said besides this, CRPF and other security agencies are organising sports and other activities in the district.
The cinema, which also houses CRPF battalion headquarter, is heavily guarded from all sides to foil any militant attack. During the first show yesterday, only security forces and their families were present in the cinema hall.
All cinema halls and wine shops were closed in the Kashmir valley in 1990 following eruption of militancy. However, in 1998 the then government of National Conference (NC) headed by Dr Farooq Abdullah, presently detained under Public Safety Act (PSA), provided cash compensation to encourage cinema owners to open their cinema halls in the valley.
Three cinema halls of 'Regal, Broadway and Neelam' were reopened. However, Regal cinema was closed again after a grenade blast in the compound of the cinema hall.
Later, Broadway cinema which was located in high security Badami Bagh cantonment area, just on other side of the road of headquarters of 15 Corps, was also closed due to very poor response and security concerns.
However, Neelam cinema, a stone throw away from Civil Secretariat, seat of the government, functioned for longer time. Barring two at Badami Bagh area and Dal Lake, all wine shops remained closed.