Omar Abdullah, Mehbooba Mufti and Sajad Lone under ‘house arrest’ in Srinagar

Educational institutions across the Jammu region have been ordered shut from Monday till further orders

According to a Police source, Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Ministers Omar Abdullah and PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti will not be allowed to move out of their houses as strict restrictions are imposed in the Kashmir Valley from early Monday morning.

Mehbooba Mufti, Omar Abdullah and Sajad Lone – the three most prominent politicians from Valley – were placed under house arrest late Sunday. 

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Mr Abdullah had earlier on August 4 night expressed apprehension that he was going to be placed under house arrest along with other mainstream leaders, while PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti had called the development “ironic”.

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“I believe I’m being placed under house arrest from midnight tonight & amp; the process has already started for other mainstream leaders. No way of knowing if this is true but if it is then I’ll see all of you on the other side of whatever is in store. Allah save us.

“To the people of Kashmir, we don”t know what is in store for us but I am a firm believer that what ever Almighty Allah has planned it is always for the better, we may not see it now but we must never doubt his ways. Good luck to everyone, stay safe & above all PLEASE STAY CALM,” Abdullah tweeted.

Read Also, Educational institutions in Jammu region also shut

While I’ve been focused on Kashmir I must add a word for people in Kargil, Ladakh & Jammu. I’ve no idea what is in store for our state but it doesn’t look good. I know many of you will be upset by what unfolds. Please don’t take the law in to your own hands, please stay calm, he added.

Moreover, I’m especially concerned about the people living in the Pir Panchal & Chenab Valley regions. These areas have been very susceptible to attempts at communal violence. I hope the Govt has taken adequate precautions to ensure no communal trouble breaks out. Violence will only play in to the hands of those who do not have the best interests of the state in mind. This wasn’t the India J&K acceded to but I’m not quite ready to give up hope yet. Let calm heads prevail. God be with you all, Mr Abdullah mentioned in a series of tweets.

Following the IANS report here, PDP chief Mufti, who tweeted about hearing “reports about internet being snapped soon including cellular coverage” and “curfew passes being issued”, posted: “God knows what awaits us tomorrow. It’s going to be a long night.” “In such difficult times, I”d like to assure our people that come what may, we are in this together & will fight it out. Nothing should break our resolve to strive for what”s rightfully ours.”

Read Also, Restrictions imposed across Kashmir Valley

Subsequently, “How ironic that elected representatives like us who fought for peace are under house arrest. The world watches as people & their voices are being muzzled in J&K. The same Kashmir that chose a secular democratic India is facing oppression of unimaginable magnitude. Wake up India”, As per the Mufti tweeted.

Meanwhile, “What is going on in J&K? Why would leaders be arrested overnight while having done no wrong? If Kashmiris are our citizens &their leaders our partners, surely the mainstream ones must be kept on board while we act against terrorists & separatists? If we alienate them, who’s left?,” Congress leader Shashi Tharoor questioned the developments in J&K..

Senior Congress leader P. Chidambaram on Monday criticised the Narendra Modi-led government for the house arrest of senior political leaders in Jammu and Kashmir, saying that it was a signal that the government will defy all democratic norms to achieve its objects. In a series of tweets, Chidambaram said: “Before the day is over we will know if there will be a major crisis in J&K. Keeping my fingers crossed.

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However, Educational institutions across the Jammu region have been ordered shut from Monday till further orders. The Jammu Deputy Commissioner has ordered all schools, colleges and academic institutions in the district to remain shut on Monday. All Kashmir University examinations scheduled to be held from August 5 to August 10 have been postponed. Also, Mobile internet has been blocked in many places and public meetings or rallies have been banned.

Read Also, High voltage Cabinet meet at PM”s residence amid J&K tensions

The orders come in view of the heightened tensions in the area over deployement of security troops and rumours that the government was planning to scrap Article 35 A and Article 370, which provide for special status to the state of Jammu and Kashmir.

The Union Cabinet headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi met here on Monday, amidst speculation that the government may take some decisions on Jammu and Kashmir. Union Home Minister Amit Shah and Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad were the first to reach the prime minister”s residence, where the meeting is taking place, officials said.

Read Also, Union Cabinet meets at PM’s residence

Jammu and Kashmir has been on the edge following deployment of additional security forces in the state last week. Speculation has been rife that the Centre has plans to do away with Article 35A, which gives exclusive rights to the state”s residents in government jobs and land.

The cabinet normally meets on every Wednesday and the reasons for convening a meeting on Monday has not been disclosed by the government yet. In Delhi, Union Home Minister Amit Shah held a meeting with top security and intelligence officials. The hour-long meeting was attended by National Security Advisor Ajit Doval, Union Home Secretary Rajiv Gauba and other senior officials.

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