Mobile phone, internet services snapped in Valley on Independence Day

Independence day functions were held across Kashmir amidst heightened security even as mobile phones and mobile internet services were snapped on Saturday as a precautionary measure, in wake of the recent spurt in militant activities in the Valley.

PTI| Updated: Aug 15, 2015, 16:54 PM IST

Srinagar: Independence day functions were held across Kashmir amidst heightened security even as mobile phones and mobile internet services were snapped on Saturday as a precautionary measure, in wake of the recent spurt in militant activities in the Valley.

Mobile phones and internet services on mobile devices were snapped at about 8 AM as people started assembling at Bakshi Stadium, the main venue for the Independence Day celebrations in Jammu and Kashmir.

The services were resumed at 12 PM, minutes after the official function at the stadium ended.

In a departure from decade-old practice, the authorities had allowed uninterrupted mobile services on the Republic Day earlier this year.

However, the practice could not be repeated today in view of increase in militant attacks in Kashmir ahead of the Independence day.

"The increase in militant attacks especially in the run up to the celebrations on Wednesday and Thursday demanded extra vigil," a police officer said.

At least 15 persons, including five security personnel, were injured in three grenade attacks and a firing incident in the Valley on Wednesday and Thursday.

Snapping of mobile phone and mobile internet services were added to the security drill in 2005 after militants detonated a bomb using a cell phone near Bakshi Stadium on Independence Day that year.

Meanwhile, heightened security measures were put in place to ensure incident-free Independence functions across the Valley.

Police and paramilitary personnel were deployed in strength across the city and other vulnerable areas in the Valley, the police officer said.

Sharp shooters were deployed on high rise buildings around Bakshi stadium, where Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed unfurled the national flag and took salute at the march past, he said.

He said all the functions in the Valley passed off peacefully.