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India's Modi to visit Kashmir, first time since special status cut – Prime Time News24



Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is scheduled to go to India-held Kashmir — for the primary time for the reason that territory’s semi-autonomy was eliminated in 2019. He will probably be holding a rally there shortly.

The area with a majority of Muslims misplaced its distinctive constitutional standing throughout Modi’s authorities in 2019, and it was divided into two areas that at the moment are immediately ruled by New Delhi: Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh. Moreover, the indigenous residents’ employment and inherited land safeguards have been taken away.

Many within the closely militarized area have been incensed by the choice, which was wildly praised all through India. Since 1989, locals within the Himalayan space have fought for independence from India’s occupation.

The foremost metropolis of Srinagar in India-held Kashmir noticed the deployment of hundreds of armed police and paramilitary troopers carrying flak jackets on Thursday. New checkpoints have been additionally put up throughout the town. Modi is predicted to talk at a public gathering there at round 2pm native time.

Guarding each route resulting in the soccer stadium the place Modi would converse, the army arrange checkpoints and put in razor wire, whereas navy commandos in motorboats patrolled the Jhelum River, which flows by means of the town.

“Varied improvement works can even be devoted to the nation,” Modi mentioned in an announcement on social media platform X forward of the go to, together with packages “boosting the agro-economy” in addition to tourism.

In accordance with a authorities assertion, Modi can even inaugurate infrastructure across the revered Muslim shrine of Hazratbal.

The gathering on Thursday is perceived as part of Modi’s marketing campaign upfront of the primary nationwide election for the reason that area misplaced its autonomy, which is ready for April and Might. The area’s legislative meeting was final up for election in 2014.

The Modi administration claims that direct authority by New Delhi over IHK introduced in a brand new interval of “peace and improvement”, however many locals and opponents argue that it additionally marked an unlimited lower in press freedom and civil liberties.

Nearly all of the town’s faculties are closed for the day, and the authorities have referred to as on authorities staff to affix the demonstration.

The administration is arranging buses to move individuals to the gathering, in line with Omar Abdullah, a former chief minister of IHK, who claimed that “nearly none” of them will probably be there voluntarily.

One other former chief minister of the area, Mehbooba Mufti, posted on social media platform X that “authorities staff are being herded at 5 am in sub-zero temperatures into automobiles … ferrying them to the PM’s rally”.

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