Srinagar: Security was heightened in Srinagar and other parts of the Valley Wednesday on the eve of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s scheduled visit.
Official sources told Kashmir Reader that a team of elite Special Protection Group (SPG) personnel has already arrived in the Valley to oversee the security preparations for Modi’s visit.
“There will be no restrictions on the vehicular movement in the city. The telecommunication network will also operate without any breakdown,” the sources said.
Earlier in the day, Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Science & Technology and Earth Sciences, Dr Jitendra Singh arrived in Srinagar and reviewed the arrangements made for Modi’s visit.
Security was beefed in major towns of the Valley in view of the PM’s visit. Here in this capital city, contingents of CRPF and policemen were deployed in strength to thwart any militant attack or anti-India protests, reports and eyewitnesses said.
Wearing full battle gear, the troopers carried out searches at several places, including, Batamaloo, Hari Singh High Street, Jehangir Chowk, Qamarwari and Maulana Azad road and subjected people to frisking and identification checks.
Similar scenes were also witnessed along the SK Park, Munawarabad, Khanyar, Rainawari, Nowhatta and other parts of the downtown city. The police also carried out surprise check of the vehicles on the entry and exit points in this capital city. Security around vital installations has also been beefed up.
“I was searched by cops thrice and subjected to identification check. The cops also asked me to produce documents of the bike I was riding. At every check point I was held up for at least 10 minutes,” Mohammad Asif, who works as a salesman at a garment store in Lal Chowk, told Kashmir Reader.
He said that cops were keeping a close watch on the bikers and subjecting them to frisking and identification checks.
Meanwhile, reports said that police and civil administration held series of meetings here and discussed threadbare the scheduled visit of the PM and the security arrangements.
This will be Modi’s fourth visit to Jammu and Kashmir after assuming the office of Prime Minister in May. During his maiden visit to the state in July, he inaugurated 240 MW Uri II hydel power project in the border town of Uri and flagged off train service from Udhampur to Katra. He also visited the state to assess the damage caused by the devastative floods last month.
“Will be in Srinagar on Diwali, 23rd October & will spend the day with our sisters & brothers affected by the unfortunate flood,” Modi had tweeted.
Several pro-freedom groups, including Syed Ali Geelani-led Hurriyat Conference and JKLF have called for a complete shutdown Thursday against the PM’s visit to the Valley.