Teachers report to schools in Kashmir, students don’t

Srinagar: Teachers reported to work in many schools in Kashmir as restrictions were eased further today but not many students were seen.

Officials said the government has made necessary arrangements for the opening of 190 primary schools in Srinagar city as security forces remained deployed in most of the Valley.

But all private schools in the city remained shut for the 15th consecutive day as parents were apprehensive about the security situation in view of violent protests over the past two days. Only Police Public School at Bemina and a few Kendriya Vidyalayas saw a handful of students turning up.

“There is so much uncertainty in the situation that sending kids to school at this stage is out of the question,” Farooq Ahmad Dar, a parent, said.

Officials in Baramulla district said schools in five towns remained closed. In the rest of the district, schools were opened, they said.

“There is no relaxation in restrictions in Pattan, Palhalan, Singhpora, Baramulla and Sopore towns. Primary schools in the rest of the district are open. We are collecting details about the number of students who have reported at their respective schools,” an official said.

A senior Srinagar district official said a few schools on the periphery were opened but in the old city and in civil lines areas, they remained shut due to violence over the past two days. Authorities had planned to open schools up to primary level and make all government offices functional from today.

In Srinagar city, barricades were removed from areas where the situation has remained peaceful since the Centre announced the scrapping of the special status of Jammu and Kashmir and bifurcated it into two union territories on 5 August.

Markets in the Valley were shut while public transport remained off roads. The movement of private vehicles in the city increased after restrictions were eased.

Swamy supports cancellation of special status

BJP lawmaker Subramanian Swamy has said the withdrawal of Jammu and Kashmir’s special status was correct but the state of the economy ‘needs to be corrected’ as this issue is also important for national security and nation-building.
He was speaking to reporters on the sidelines of an event in Pune.

Replying to a question on the Centre’s move to scrap the provisions of Article 370, which gave special powers to Jammu and Kashmir, and the economy, Swamy said, “The economy needs to be corrected. My advice was not sought on the economic front. My advice was sought on Article 370, and it was done correctly.”

“Yes, the economy should be given priority. In fact, both things are important for nation-building and national security,” he added.