|Early Times Report|
Srinagar, Jan 26: The famous three-km-long Sunday market, in the summer capital, Srinagar, was closed for security reasons even as 71st Republic Day was celebrated across Kashmir valley amid unprecedented deployment of troops to throttle any militant attack.
Meanwhile, shops and business establishments were closed and traffic was off the road due to strike called by some separatist groups on the Republic Day in Kashmir, where business and other activities were crippled for about five months against scrapping of Article 370 and Article 35 A, besides bifurcating the state into two Union Territories (UTs) on August 5. Business in Sunday market was also suspended during this time.
The vendors alleged that they were informed by authorities not to put up their stalls this Sunday for security reasons as the main venue of Republic Day function in Srinagar is just 500 meters away from the market. “In any case, the market would not have attracted customers due to restrictions on the movement of people and vehicles in the city,” they said.
The three-km-long market was deserted with only security forces personnel deployed in strength to prevent any militant attack.
The market every week attracts thousands of customers even as hundreds of vendors put up their stall from Radio Kashmir (RK), Srinagar, crossing to Hari Singh High Streets (HSHS), including historic Lal Chowk, the nerve centre of the city.
Security forces were not allowing pedestrian or vehicular movement from Presentation Convent School towards Radio Kashmir (RK).
The vendors, who sell products from simple needles to carpets, do business worth crores of rupees every Sunday in the weekly market in the heart of the city.