SRINAGAR: PDP leader Mehbooba Mufti on Saturday said that limitations on mobile services and the enforcement of Section 144 have become routine for Kashmiris, who have grown accustomed to such constraints.

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Her comments were prompted by the Ladakh administration’s decision to enforce an indefinite prohibitory order under Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, accompanied by a ban on high-speed internet in Leh district ahead of a scheduled march on April 7 aimed at highlighting the region’s diminishing pasturelands.

In a social media post, the former PDP Chief stated, “Imposing Section 144 & suspending mobile data – a norm for us Kashmiris has now been extended to Ladakh . It exposes GOIs fake claims of normalcy & also its high handedness by infringing upon the fundamental right to peacefully protest and dissent.”

Mufti advocated for the genuine concerns of Ladakhis, who fear that their land and resources are being handed over to the BJP’s allies, potentially causing environmental damage in Ladakh. “Ladakhis have genuine apprehensions that their land & resources are being outsourced to BJP’s cronies at the cost of wrecking environmental havoc in Ladakh. Today on one hand China has occupied a big chunk of their grazing land & on the other GOI is plundering their resources. We Kashmiris understand their pain & stand with them against the onslaught on their identity & resources.”

Ahead of the scheduled Pashmina Border March on Sunday, the Ladakh administration imposed Section 144 in Leh, prohibiting the organisation of processions, rallies, or marches. Additionally, high-speed mobile internet services were suspended for a 24-hour period from Saturday evening to Sunday evening.

Section 144 prohibits large assemblies of four or more people. Sonam Wangchuk, slated to lead the civil society march towards the China border, expressed dismay over the restrictions, alleging that authorities were preventing people from other villages from joining the “peaceful” demonstration in Leh.


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