Akeel Rashid

‘#KashmirHighwayBan’ trends on Twitter

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Srinagar, Apr 10: It was for the second time on Wednesday that the civilian traffic movement was restricted on the national highway in Jammu and Kashmir following a formal order issued by the government on April 03.

Though magnitude and impact of the traffic restrictions felt by the people on the ground remains underreported so far, the government nevertheless on last Sunday claimed that the 1st  day of civilian traffic movement during the restricted travel period on the highway was “smooth with minimal public hindrance”.

“Elaborate arrangements made by the government for the convenience of the public on the National Highway 44 during the restricted travel period on the highway was quite successful on the first day of the traffic prohibition today,” the communiqué had said.

However, the move to restrict civilian traffic was denounced by the netizens using hashtag #KashmirHighwayBan on the very first day of its announcement and the outrage picked up today after a photograph of a man showing his palm that had a stamp of Executive Magistrate Anantnag on it went viral and faced backlash on social network platforms.

“This is not stamp of permission but stamp of oppression, suppression, colonialism, Nazism & subjugation. However, will save the stamp picture to show to our coming generations about our daily lives, hardships and misery during our struggling days,” wrote a twitter user @Koshur_Munda.

“Remember PK, who always raise his THAPA KIDAR HAI. Here in kashmir we need THAPA (Stamp) To walk on our streets and highways, we Kashmiris need approval, a stamp from their so called justice rooms. Now many wonder where the next stamp will be…???,” wrote another user @MalikSomair1.

Meanwhile, the netizens of other states are also expressing their resentment over the order to ban civilian traffic on national highway in J&K.

“This is New India. This is New #Kashmiri ‘Identity’. This is New ‘Right’ to use their own street. #KashmirHighwayban p.c~ Qaiser Mirza  P.s: Jammu-Srinagar highway civilian traffic ban https://t.co/fVMtIkVdL4,” wrote a twitter user from New Delhi.

“Permission given by the local authorities for Kashmiris to travel through the highway. Not much to the surprise, Kashmiris have never been treated as humans #Kashmir #KashmirHighwayban,” wrote another user from Tamil Nadu.

Pertinently, the Jammu and Kashmir High Court Tuesday rejected the plea seeking stay on the government order that imposed restrictions on movement of civilian traffic for Wednesdays and Sundays on the Jammu-Kashmir national highway.

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