No relaxation in curfew across Kashmir Valley

Srinagar:Amid speculation that curfew will be relaxed in the Kashmir Valley, a state police spokesperson on Thursday said that the restrictions will "remain strictly in place throughout the day till further orders". The fresh order by the police came as separatists asked Kashmiris to open their shops and stock essentials after they temporarily relaxed the shutdown from 2 p.m. on Thursday. The shutdown relaxation sparked rumours that the government will also ease its curfew restrictions. The authorities had earlier decided to relax curfew across the valley to allow the people buy essentials of life. But the police spokesperson said, "There will be no relaxation in curfew and restrictions across the Kashmir Valley." In Srinagar, the police and paramilitary presence was beefed up and areas where restrictions were a bit lax in the past few days also came under strict curfew. Some shopkeepers in Lal Chowk area and surrounding areas, including upscale Polo View, Lambert Lane and Residency Road markets, had assembled to open their stores after 2 p.m.  However, they were not allowed as police closed almost all entry points to Lal Chowk. The authorities decided to open schools in four districts of Ganderbal, Bandipora, Badgam and Baramulla on Thursday. The valley has 10 districts.  However, most of the schools had very little or no presence of children. Separatists have again called a shutdown from Friday till Monday. The valley has been reeling under curfew announced by the authorities and a total protest shutdown called by the separatists for the last 13 days following violent protests which started on July 9, a day after Hizbul commander Burhan Wani was killed in a gunfight with security forces.