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Kashmir shuts down in protest as India celebrates Republic Day

A paramilitary solider stands guard at a roadblock near a stadium during the Republic Day parade in Srinagar, in the Indian-administered Kashmir, on January 26, 2021. (Photo by AFP)

Shahana Butt
Press TV, Indian-controlled Kashmir

Streets were deserted, shops were closed, and businesses were abandoned in the Indian-administered Kashmir as India celebrated its 72nd Republic day.

Amid suspended internet services and heightened security arrangements, authorities have held a symbolic Republic Day parade in a highly secured sports stadium in the heart of Srinagar.

The Indian-administered Kashmir came under India's absolute control after New Delhi stripped Kashmir of its special status in August 2019. Following the move, pro-freedom groups in the disputed region were detained, so that any dissent against India's decision would be prevented.

Although New Delhi says the revocation of Article 370 was to integrate Jammu and Kashmir into the rest of India for easier development and equal opportunity for the citizens, analysts say the reality on the ground is quite the opposite.

By staying indoors on India's Republic Day, the people of Kashmir have once again displayed their level of alienation. Analysts say India needs to take the necessary steps and fulfill its promises in order to win their hearts.

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