SRINAGAR: Authorities relaxed curfew in the Zadibal and Nauhatta police precincts after six days on Tuesday afternoon, with Maulana Masroor Abbas and Maulana Khursheed Ahmad Qanoongo heading a Shia-Sunni peace march in the trouble-hit areas downtown.
Caged indoors since last Wednesday evening barring a brief interval early on Saturday when curfew was lifted in the Old City, people in the two police precincts surged into main roads in large numbers as the two-hour break was announced at around 4 p.m., massing in clusters to exchange news and views, and shopping for essentials.
As the relaxation period passed off incident-free, authorities extended the break, saying curfew would not be re-imposed if the situation remained calm.
The Shia-Sunni Coordination Committee which met at the Mirwaiz Manzil held a peace march from Rajouri Kadal to Alamgari Bazaar, appealing for unity, calm and harmony.
Heading the march, Maulana Masroor and Maulana Qanoongo addressed people at Hawal Chowk and Alamgari Bazaar, asking both sides not to let of go of restraint and resolve.
“Some political elements have become active to disrupt the centuries old amity and harmony in Kashmir to serve a specific political agenda,” Maulana Masroor said.
“The tensions are politically-motivated and aimed at dividing Muslims,” he said.
“No one will be allowed to disrupt our unity and harmony, and elements involved in this divisive activity will be exposed,” he said.
“The tensions are limited only to a few areas, reflecting that both communities are behaving with sanity,” he said.
Meanwhile, the superintendent of the police (SP) for Hazratbal, Abdul Qayoom, said that talks had been held with prominent members of both sides who had been asked to identify and upbraid elements responsible for disturbing peace.
He said that curfew would not be re-imposed in the Zadibal and Nauhatta areas provided the situation remained calm.
Earlier in the day, meeting at the Mirwaiz Manzil before its peace march, the Shia-Sunni Coordination Committee expressed concern at the recent incidents and the prolonged curfew imposed in the Old City areas.
Gathering at the directive of Mirwaiz Umer Farooq, the panel, which, apart from Maulana Masroor and Qanoongo, comprised of Ghulam Nabi Zakki, Ghulam Muhammad Nagoo, Muhammad Shafi Khan, Mushtaq Ahmad Sofi and others, held talks with prominent residents from the Hawal, Zadibal and adjoining areas, a statement said.