Amid uncertainty over proposed abrogation of Article-35 A and apprehension of prolonged strike the roadside vendors in Srinagar offered consumers the vegetables and fruits on discount to finish their stock on Saturday.
For Abdul Majeed Sofi, a roadside vendor at Gurduwara Chowk in Lal Chowk, Saturday was a day of loss and he preferred to sell onions and potatoes on discount.
“I decided to offer 5-10 rupees discount than normal rates to finish the stock as there is fear of strike from Sunday,” he said.
Sofi said Indian news channels have created a war-like situation and have shown that they were never loyal towards Kashmiris. He said in 2016 also the situation was similar but this government has hidden agenda in Kashmir.
Fearing strike people from various places were in hurry and were seen buying essentials in bulk.
Yaqoob Mirza, a commuter from Central Kashmir’s Budgam while buying eatables at Jehangir Chowk said, “There is something fishy going on.”
“Central Government is deliberately trying to scrap Article 35-A and it is the duty of every J&K citizen, particularly Kashmiris to come forward at this crucial stage,” Mirza said.
“We are living troubled life as the New Delhi is using Kashmiris to satisfy its collective consciousness. Centre has failed at all ends and now they will use Kashmir like they did in 2013 to hang Afzal Guru,” he said.
Meanwhile, partial shutdown was witnessed in city centre and other adjoining markets on Saturday afternoon after the alleged reports of abrogation of Article 35-A and detaining of Jamaat-e-Islami leaders.
Another vendor at Hari Singh High Street, Mudasir Abbasi said he also sold vegetables at discount fearing ‘prolonged strike.’
“Government has waged war against Kashmiris. First, they assaulted Kashmiri students across India and now they are trying to scrap Article 35-A,” he said.
Abbasi said Kashmiris are ready to face any difficulty to safeguard the Article 35-A, that empowers the state legislature to define “permanent residents” and provides special rights and privileges.
He said, “Modi government is using Kashmiris as a trump card to gain vote bank ahead of 2019 Lok Sabha elections.”