Panic gripped Kashmir ever since a fresh order asking tourists and Amarnath Yatris to leave the Valley was issued on Friday, with the residents stocking up dry ration and essentials fearing long law and order disturbance. The state government on Friday issued an advisory to Amarnath pilgrims and tourists to curtail their stay in Kashmir immediately. This has added to tensions of Jammu and Kashmir residents, more so after Centre ordered the deployment of 100 companies of additional troops in the valley. The deployment of troops and various orders gave rise to the speculations about some major decision in the offing regarding Jammu and Kashmir's special status.
Kashmir situation: Latest Highlights10:05 pm: Railway waives cancellation charges for the next 48 hours for passengers travelling from Jammu and Kashmir
8:24 pm: Tread cautiously on Article 35A and 370, says Ex J&K Governor Karan Singh
Legally, morally and constitutionally, the state is part of the Indian sovereign. However, on Article 370 and 35A, I would advise extreme caution: tread carefully for there are legal, political, constitutional and emotional factors involved which should be thoroughly assessed, I think that is fair warning," said Karan Singh
7:15 pm: Minutes after the UK and Germany, Australia also issues advisory to its citizens to not travel to Jammu and Kashmir.
"We advise against all travel here due to the very high risk. If you do travel, you should typically seek professional security advice. Be aware that regular travel insurance policies will be void and that the Australian Government is unlikely to be able to provide consular assistance," the Australian government's travel advisory read.
7:00 pm: Germany issues travel advisory for its citizens travelling to Jammu and Kashmir, warns them to "remain vigilant"
"Urgently discouraging travelling to Jammu & Kashmir following a security alert by government. Those who are currently in Kashmir are encouraged to leave the state," says the advisory.
6:00 pm: Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satyapal Malik says there is no need for people to worry
"It's normal. Only rumour mongering is going on. It's a very routine thing here. If you sneeze at Lal Chowk, it becomes an explosion when it comes here. Unnecessary panic is being created by vested interests, specially some political parties," he said.
5:19 pm: Jammu and Kashmir government requests IAF to airlift Amarnath Yatris
The Jammu & Kashmir government has requested the Indian Air Force to airlift Amarnath pilgrims out of the Kashmir valley to Jammu, Pathankot or Delhi from where they can get back home, the news agency ANI reported.
4:49 pm: The British Govt has issued an advisory asking its citizens not to travel to Kashmir including the tourist destinations of Pahalgam, Gulmarg and Sonamarg.
UK's Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) has issued an advisory to its citizens against travelling to any part of Jammu & Kashmir except Jammu city and Ladakh.
"The FCO advise against all but essential travel to the city of Srinagar and travel between the cities of Jammu and Srinagar on the Jammu-Srinagar national highway. The tourist destinations of Pahalgam, Gulmarg and Sonamarg fall within the areas to which the FCO advise against all travel".
"On 2 August 2019, Indian media reported that the Government of Jammu and Kashmir had advised tourists and Amarnath Yatra pilgrims to curtail their stay in the Kashmir Valley immediately and take necessary measures to return home as soon as possible because of security threats. The British High Commission in New Delhi is monitoring the situation. If you’re in Jammu and Kashmir, you should remain vigilant, follow the advice of local authorities and keep up to date with developments, including via this travel advice," the travel advisory noted.
4:30 pm: Sending additional forces worrisome, not happened in 30 years, says Ghulam Nabi Azad
The advisory that was issued by Home Ministry yesterday is worrisome and people of the entire nation as well as of Jammu and Kashmir are scared. No government has ever asked tourists to go back. Such thing has never happened.
- Former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Mehbooba Mufti said that it is a travesty that the Central government has not made efforts to reach out and clarify on the recent developments in the state.
- Jammu and Kashmir Police on today's Sopore encounter: Two Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) terrorists neutralised in the encounter. Arms and ammunition were recovered.
- BJP leader Ravinder Raina says tricolor will be unfurled in every nook and corner of Jammu and Kashmir on August 15.
- JK governor says state has no knowledge of any changes to constitutional provisions: official statement.
- No need to mix deployment of troops with all kind of issues, there is no connection and therefore no cause for panic: J-K guv.
- We want assurances from Centre on Constitutional guarantees given to J-K at the time of accession: Omar Abdullah.
- We want Centre to issue statement in Parliament on Monday over prevailing situation in J-K: Omar Abdullah.
- J-K Governor SP Malik has assured that no movement being made on Article 35-A, Article 370 and state's trifurcation: Omar Abdullah.
Omar Abdullah meets Governor Satya Pal Malik in Srinagar
- Foreign passengers on a Srinagar-bound flight from Delhi disembarked moments before its take-off late Friday night.
- An encounter broke out between security forces and terrorists in Malmapanpora area of Jammu and Kashmir's Sopore. A terrorist has been killed, and an army personnel is reported to be injured in the exchange of fire.
- Machail Yatra to Goddess Durga shrine in Kishtwar district of Jammu & Kashmir has been suspended.
Latest Developments on Kashmir situation:
1. What does the Amarnath advisory say: Keeping in view the latest intelligence inputs of terror threats with specific targeting of the Amarnath Yatra, and given the prevailing security situation in the Kashmir Valley, in the interest of safety and security of the tourists and Amarnath Yatris, it is advised that they may curtail their stay in the valley immediately and take necessary measures to return as soon as possible.
2. What DGCA said in advisory to airlines: DGCA has advised airlines to remain ready. If there is a need, airlines should be ready to run extra flights. Around 8.45 pm, the situation at the Srinagar airport was checked by the DGCA and it was found to be normal. It was found that there is no need to run extra flights right now. But if the need arises later on, the airlines have been advised to remain ready to run extra flights (a source privy to the development told PTI).
3. Airlines offer full waiver - What major airlines announced:
Air India: In view of the prevailing situation in Jammu and Kashmir, Air India will give a full fee waiver on rescheduling or cancellation for all flights to or from Srinagar till August 15.
IndiGo: In view of the current security situation in Srinagar and the Government advisory regarding it, we are providing a full fee waiver on rescheduling/cancellation for all flights to/from Srinagar till Aug 09, 2019.
Vistara: Due to prevailing security situation in Kashmir, we are waiving change and cancellation fees for flights to/from Jammu and Kashmir for next seven days (till August 9, 2019). Only fare difference, if any, will be applicable for date changes."
4. Governor Satya Pal Malik clears the air - No plans to abrogate Article 35A, avoid unncessary panic
A delegation of PDP President Mehbooba Mufti, J&K Peoples Movement chief Shah Faesal and Peoples Conference leaders Sajjad Lone and Imran Reza Ansari met Governor Satya Pal Malik late Friday night. The delegation expressed concerns about the panic situation in Kashmir valley created by the developments.
"Governor Malik informed the delegation that there were serious and credible inputs which were available to the security agencies regarding terrorist attacks on the Amarnath Yatra...It is in this context that the government had issued an advisory asking Yatris and tourists to return as soon as possible."
Malik said that "unnecessary panic" is being created by linking this measure to all kinds of other issues.
"A pure security measure is being mixed up with issues with which it has no connection. That is the cause of the panic," he said and requested the leaders to ask their supporters "not to mix up matters, to maintain calm and not believe exaggerated rumours being circulated all around". "The Governor himself had clarified matters on (Article) 35A yesterday in Baramulla and the day before in Srinagar," the statement added. Malik had said in Baramulla and Srinagar that there were no plans to abrogate Article 35A of the Constitution, which gives special powers to Jammu and Kashmir.
5. Pakistan-based terrorists planning to target Amarnath Yatra
The Army has intelligence inputs on terrorists planning to target the ongoing Amarnath Yatra, which is why an advisory was also issued. The Army on Friday said that weapons and explosives were recovered along the yatra route, while assuring that was geared up to foil any attempt to attack the pilgrimage. The Amarnath Yatra commenced on July 1 and will conclude on August 15. In the past few days, a Pakistan-made mine and a huge cache of arms have been recovered by the Army. In a presser, the Army said it was getting specific and confirmed intelligence inputs that terrorists led by Pakistan and Pakistan Army are trying to target the Shri Amarnathji Yatra which is going on.