SRINAGAR: Governor N N Vohra on Friday skipped the official martyr's day function honouring July 13, 1931 martyrs in Jammu and Kashmir.
Neither Vohra nor any of his three advisors visited the martyrs' graveyard at Naqashband Sahib in downtown Srinagar today to pay homage to the July 13, 1931 martyrs.
It was for the first time that the head of the State government stayed away from official function honouring July 1931 martyrs.
July 13 is observed Martyrs Day' in J&K to honour the ses of 22 people killed in 1931 during firing by forces of then Maharaja outside the Central Jail Srinagar, where an in-camera trial of Abdul Qadeer, a freedom fighter, was being held after his arrest in the agitation.
The day is being observed as "Martyrs Day" and there is a government holiday on the day. The BJP ministers during the three years rules of PDP-BJP government had also stayed away from official function honouring July 1931 martyrs.
After fall BJP government last month, Governor's rule was imposed in the State. The official wreath-laying ceremony today was presided over by Director General of Police (DGP) S P Vaid along with Divisional Commissioner Kashmir Baseer Khan. ass="MsoNoSpacing">In past, the chief minister and council of ministers and opposition leaders have been visiting the martyrs graveyard on July 13 to remember the 1931 martyrs.
Former chief Minister Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti and State Congress chief G A Mir visited the martyrs graveyard to offer tributes to the martyrs. Talking to reporters after laying wreaths on graves of martyrs, Omar said if the Governor was busy, then any of his three advisors should have attended the ceremony.
"It is an official function and it should be honoured likewise. If the government wants to end the tradition of commemorating the martyrs then let them try it," he said. Omar said holding a meeting in the secretariat on the day was unheard of.
The government had asked all administrative secretaries to attend the meeting at Secretariat on July 13 at 3 pm. Meanwhile, authorities imposed restrictions in parts of Srinagar and placed separatist leaders under house arrest to thwart a rally called by separatist leaders. The cops had placed barricades on the roads to restrict the movement of people. Police detained moderate Hurriyat leader and cleric Mirwaiz Umar Farooq outside his Nageen residence after he attempted to march towards the martyrs' graveyard.
The hardline separatist leader Syed Ali Geelani was also barred from moving out from his house.
Other top separatist leaders are under house arrest of detention. On the call of separatists, Kashmir observed shutdown today.