Republic Day was celebrated across Kashmir on Thursday with functions held at all district headquarters of the valley amidst tight security arrangements, officials said here.
The main Republic Day function in the valley was held at the Sher-e-Kashmir Cricket Stadium at Sonawar here. Advisor to Lieutenant Governor Rajesh Rai Bhatnagar was the chief guest and presided over the function.
Braving bone-chilling cold, contingents of the police, CRPF, NCC and school children took part in the march past where Bhatnagar took the salute. After the parade, artistes from various parts of the union territory performed at the cultural event.
In his address, Bhatnagar highlighted the steps taken by the LG administration and the central government to improve the development scenario and security situation in Kashmir.
BJP workers led by the party's state general secretary Ashok Koul unfurled the national flag at Lal Chowk's clock tower.
While security force personnel were deployed in numbers to ensure smooth passage of the functions, the atmosphere in the city was visibly relaxed with fewer check posts set up to regulate traffic. Concertina wires were also not used to block the intersections in the city.
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In a rare departure from practice, the internet on mobile devices was not suspended, which used to be a regular feature of the security drill after the 2005 IED blast, triggered by using a mobile phone, outside the venue of the Independence Day function here.
Similar functions were held at all district headquarters of the valley where respective deputy commissioners presided over the proceedings.
Reports reaching here said the Republic Day parade in Anantnag and Kulgam districts made for a spectacular view as the parade was held amid snowfall, which had painted the parade ground white at both places.
In Pattan area of north Kashmir Baramulla district, a group of school children took out a 'tiranga' rally to mark the Republic Day.
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