Diwali celebrations remained a sombre affair in Kishtwar town and its surrounding areas even as authorities lifted day curfew in the area on Wednesday. Curfew was imposed in the area following the killing of a senior BJP leader Anil Parihar and his brother Ajit Parihar by some unidentified gunmen in Kishtwar’s Tapal mohalla on Thursday. The killings, which state government attributed to terrorists, came ahead of the coming panchayat elections being held in the state in nine phases from November 17.
Sources said that decision to lift day curfew was taken by the administration following considerable improvement in the situation. No untoward incident was reported during the relaxation period. Meanwhile, all the shops and other business establishments were open and vehicular traffic plied as usual on the roads, but the festive spirit appeared missing. Only a few people were seen purchasing sweets and crackers in the market.
Sanatan Dharam Sabha had Tuesday appealed Hindus in Kishtwar not to celebrate Diwali so as to express solidarity with the bereaved families of a senior BJP leader and his brother, who were killed by unidentified gunmen last week. However, people were allowed to light candles during the night.