The Jammu and Kashmir government today began functioning here with Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti inspecting a guard of honour amid the presence of cabinet ministers and bureaucrats at the seat of government in Jammu after shifting from Srinagar, the summer capital of the state, as part of the pre-Independence practice of “darbar move.”
Mean while, protests rocked Jammu on the re-opening of Civil Secretariat as part of the bi-annual darbar move, with the opposition parties holding separate demonstrations, accusing the BJP-PDP led state government of complete failure on all fronts.
The deputy chief minister said, “Everybody in a democracy has the right to protest. There is no ban on protests.”
The bandh call was given by Chamber of Traders Federation (CTF) to protest toll tax on goods imported from outside the state and to press for public holiday on the birth anniversary of last Dogra ruler Maharaja Hari Singh.
While many organisations including Jammu High Court Bar Association, Congress, National Panthers Party and Team Jammu extended support to the strike call, Bari Brahmana Industries Association (BBIA) opposed it.
It said “the toll post is working as a tool to stop the import of unaccounted goods by “vested interests”.
Read also: 5 things about Darbar Move
Closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras at important installations and thoroughfares have been made operational to maintain a close vigil.
The winter capital has been given a face-lift ahead of the re-opening of the ‘move offices’.
The roads around and leading to the Civil Secretariat, the seat of Jammu and Kashmir government, are being renovated with labourers busy cleaning the pathways and painting the roadsides.
Tight security arrangements were made to prevent protestors from marching towards the Civil Secretariat around which Section 144 is already imposed by the district administration as preventive measure.