Kashmiris observe Eid amid lockdown

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People in Indian-administered Kashmir observed the Muslim festival of Eid al-Adha amid a communications blackout and tight security on Monday.

BBC reporters in the region say many offered prayers at local mosques as the main mosque in the capital, Srinagar, was out of bounds.

Some protests were reported in the Soura area of the city but the festival was largely peaceful, officials said.

The area has been under lockdown since India revoked its special status.

Article 370, as the law is known, gave the state of Jammu and Kashmir considerable autonomy – its own constitution, a separate flag and freedom to make laws. Foreign affairs, defence and communications remained the preserve of the central government.

Its revocation has caused considerable anger in the region, which Pakistan and India both claim in full but control in part.

India deployed tens of thousands of troops to Muslim-majority Jammu and Kashmir ahead of last week’s announcement that special status was to be revoked.

Since that controversial announcement, it has detained hundreds of people including politicians, activists and academics in makeshift centres in an effort to quell protests.

However violence has broken out. There have been some incidents of protesters hurling stones at security forces and Friday saw hundreds clash with troops in Soura after weekly midday prayers.

As a result, Monday saw a tightening of restrictions.

Telephone networks and the internet, which were shut down last week, are yet to be restored, making it impossible for people to wish each other for the festival.

Kashmiris living in other parts of India say they haven’t been able to wish their family members.

Many have not heard from relatives since last week’s lockdown was imposed.

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For many people in the state, Article 370 – as the law guaranteeing special status was known – was the main justification for being a part of India.

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