The security forces, accused of using excessive force in the past week to keep the protests under check, were singled out for treatment. Even before the day began, they were relegated to spectator status, with the administration choosing not to impose curfew overnight.
Then, as the crowd began to pour in, every protestor strained that extra bit to heap insult on the already drooping shoulders. Every truck slowed down in front of the slumped security personnel as the vocal chords found more power and hands came together rapidly in mock clapping.
The residents of Srinagar were unanimous in their reading: They hadn't seen anything of this sort ever.
"I have seen the worst days of militancy in the 1990s. It was nothing like this. After two decades, the legacy of Azadi has been passed on to the current generation in a matter of days," said the editor of a local daily.
Image: Security forces were passive spectators.
Also read: Violence escalates in Kashmir