Top Oppn leaders under house arrest in Jammu

Heavy rush at Narwal Mandi in Jammu on Thursday. -Excelsior/Rakesh
Heavy rush at Narwal Mandi in Jammu on Thursday. -Excelsior/Rakesh

Schools to remain closed in 8 distts

Excelsior Correspondent

JAMMU, Aug 8: Situation across Jammu region remained peaceful on fourth day of restrictions, which have been eased in Jammu, Kathua and Samba districts with the opening of educational institutions while schools and colleges, both Government and private, will remain closed in other parts of the region tomorrow even as the Government has kept several Opposition leaders under house arrest as precautionary measure.
National Conference leader and former MLA Devender Singh Rana remained under house arrest for fourth consecutive day today in Gandhi Nagar. His party colleagues in Jammu including Javed Rana, former MLA Mendhar and Surjit Singh Slathia, former Minister also spent fourth day in house arrest.
Javed Rana was under house arrest at Channi Himmat and Slathia at Trikuta Nagar.
“Devender Singh Rana was first Opposition leader to be placed under house arrest on the intervening night of August 4 and 5 before the announcement of abrogation of Article 370 and bifurcation of Jammu and Kashmir into two Union Territories,” reports said.
National Panthers Party leader and former Minister Harshdev Singh was also placed under house arrest at his official residence at Gandhi Nagar this morning and his movement has been completely restricted with deployment of Rapid Action Force (RAF) and para-military personnel.
Harshdev described his house arrest as “mockery of democracy” and “completely unconstitutional” and declared that his party would continue to fight for full Statehood to Jammu region.
Congress leaders and former Ministers, Raman Bhalla, Tara Chand and others were also placed under house arrest.
Bhalla said police officers and jawans have surrounded his house and barred his movement. Tara Chand said he was under house arrest for three days and was allowed to proceed for cremation of a friend at Khour today but asked to return by the evening.
Bhalla said there was no demand from anyone for Union Territory to Jammu and Kashmir and the Central Government has done grave injustice with the people of Jammu by depriving them of the Statehood.
Reports said several prominent Opposition leaders were under house arrest in other parts of Jammu region.
Meanwhile, life remained normal in most parts of Jammu region today. While shops and business establishments remained opened in Jammu district and private traffic plied normally, commercial traffic remained off the roads during the day. However, it was life as usual in Kathua and Samba districts. Educational institutions reopened in Kathua district today and will reopen in Samba district tomorrow.
However, educational institutions in all other districts of Jammu region will remain closed tomorrow for fifth consecutive day.
Jammu University will also remain closed on August 9. The University has postponed all Under Graduate and Post Graduate examinations to be held on August 9 and 10. New schedule for holding various examinations will be notified later, a University spokesman said.
In Doda district, authorities relaxed restrictions for an hour in the afternoon to allow people to purchase essential commodities. Relaxation period passed off peacefully.
Mobile internet services remained shut in entire Jammu province for fifth day today. Telephone services also remained affected in Doda, Kishtwar, Ramban, Rajouri and Poonch districts.
Private traffic plied on National Highways and other major roads but commercial transport remained off the roads.