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Last rites of braveheart Colonel Santosh Mahadik performed with full military honours

​The last rites of Colonel Santosh Mahadik, who was martyred on Tuesday in a fierce gun battle with terrorists who had infiltrated from across the border in Jammu and Kashmir, was performed in Maharashtra’s Satara district on Thursday.

​The last rites of Colonel Santosh Mahadik, who was martyred on Tuesday in a fierce gun battle with terrorists who had infiltrated from across the border in Jammu and Kashmir, was performed in Maharashtra’s Satara district on Thursday.Mahadik was cremated with full military honours including a 21-gun salute in his home town Satara in Maharashtra.Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar, along with many politicians and retired armymen attended the last rites of Mahadik.Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis paid homage to the Colonel, when the the army officer’s mortal remains were brought on Wednesday night, en route to his native Satara district.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A recipient of the Sena medal for gallantry, 39-year-old Mahadik was leading a team of 41 Rashtriya Rifles in a combing operation in Kupwara in north Kashmir when he fell prey to terrorists’ bullets.The officer had made the supreme sacrifice while leading his troops in the operation from the front. Even as their Colonel breathed his last, the troops, as an ode to his bravery and commitment, continued with the operation while reinforcements were rushed in.The Colonel was an officer of the elite 21 Para Special Forces and had volunteered to command a Rashtriya Rifles battalion in operations.

Check www.jkbose.co.in for JK Bose 10th class Bi-annual (Kashmir Division) Result 2015

Candidates need to keep their roll number handy.

Long wait of candidates are finally over. Jammu and Kashmir Board of School Education (JK Bose) has released the result for 10th Class Bi-annual results of Kashmir Division.The exam results have been declared on Wednesday. The Jammu and Kashmir State Board of School Education also known as JKSBSE or JK SBOSE conducts the exam for students in the state. It conducts class 10, class 12 exam and also for some certification courses. It was founded way back in 1975. Candidates need to log on to the website www.jkbose.co.in . They will need their roll number to access the result. The result can be saved for further reference. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>

Army colonel from Maharashtra falls to militants’ bullets in Kashmir

Hailing from Satara in Maharashtra, Colonel Mahadik and his team was chasing a group of militants in the thick forests when they came under a barrage of firing.

Col Santosh Mahadik

Colonel Santosh Mahadik’s name was enough to send shivers down the militants in the border district of Kupwara. A highly-decorated commando, Colonel Mahadik, commanding officer of the 41 Rashtriya Riffles (RR), led several anti-militant operations in his tenure before falling to the bullets at Manigah forest area on Tuesday. Hailing from Satara in Maharashtra, Colonel Mahadik and his team was chasing a group of militants in the thick forests when they came under a barrage of firing. Leading from the front, Colonel Mahadik fought bravely against the militants before he was hit by a bullet causing him grievous wounds. He was airlifted to the army’s 92-base hospital in Srinagar where he succumbed to his wounds.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> A trained commando of the elite 21 Para (Special Forces) of the Indian army, Colonel Mahadik had conducted several anti-terror operations thus breaking the backbone of the militants across the spectrum. “Colonel Mahadik made the supreme sacrifice in the highest traditions of the Indian Army. He was a true soldier and had conducted many successful counter-terrorist operations. Originally from the special forces, the officer was earlier awarded Sena Medal for exhibiting gallantry and leadership in counter terrorist operations,” said Colonel NN Joshi, defence spokesman at Srinagar . In fact, the operation against the militants in the forest area of Kupwara had been going on since Friday when the troops received inputs about the presence of heavily armed ultras in the jungles. A joint operation was launched by army and the Jammu and Kashmir police to track down the ultras. In the initial gun fight two security forces personnel were injured. On Tuesday, Colonel Mahadik led a group of troopers deep into the jungles to hunt down the hiding militants. As they were tightening the noose, militants opened fire in which two security force men including CO and a cop were injured. Later Colonel Mahadik died in the hospital. Colonel Mahadik is survived by wife and two children aged eleven and five years. Lieutenant General DS Hooda, general officer commanding-in-chief (GOC-in-C) Northern Command expressed deep condolences on the loss of the brave officer. “We owe a deep debt of gratitude to officers like Santosh who lead from the front and are willing to pay the ultimate price in the fight against terrorism,” Lt Gen Hooda said. Colonel Mahadik is the second top ranking army officer to die fighting militants this year. On January 27, Colonel Munindra Nath Rai, the commanding officer of 42 RR, was killed while leading an anti-terror operations in Tral area of south Kashmir. Colonel Rai died just a day after he was honoured with Yudh Seva Medal for his exemplary bravery in the war against militancy.

Manohar Parrikar pays tribute to Colonel killed in Kupwara encounter

The Commanding Officer of 41 Rashtriya Rifles Colonel Santosh, who was leading a search party, was critically injured when militants hiding in a dense forest area of Haji Naka opened fire.

“We are proud of our young officers like him who lead from the front and did not hesitate to sacrifice their lives to protect the nation,” he said.

File Photo
Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar on Tuesday paid his tributes to Colonel Santosh Mahadik who was martyred in an encounter in Kupwara in Jammu and Kashmir today.In a message, he said, “We are proud of our young officers like him who lead from the front and did not hesitate to sacrifice their lives to protect the nation.” The Commanding Officer of 41 Rashtriya Rifles Colonel Santosh, who was leading a search party, was critically injured when militants hiding in a dense forest area of Haji Naka opened fire.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Also read- Jammu and Kashmir: Militants kill army colonel in Kupwara encounter Santosh, who was from the elite regiment of Para Commandos, was evacuated to a hospital but he succumbed to injuries.

Pakistan Rangers target Border Security Force positions in Jammu

Jammu: Pakistan Rangers on Tuesday resorted to unprovoked firing at Border Security Force (BSF) positions on the international border in Samba district of Jammu region.

Representational image. PTI

Representational image. PTI

“Pakistan Rangers started firing in Chalari and Ghugwal areas of the border in Samba district at 3.50 am on Tuesday targeting nine BSF border outposts,” a senior police official told IANS.

“They used small arms and automatics to target the positions. The firing was effectively retaliated using same calibre weapons.”

Pakistan’s targeting of Indian positions in Jammu and Kashmir has come a day after Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif pledged continued support to the separatist movement against India in Kashmir.

Sharif said this in a letter addressed to Asiya Andrabi, chief of Dukhtaran-e-Milat (Daughters of Faith).

IANS

Deal with ISIS flag waiving in Kashmir seriously: Shiv Sena

“ISIS, which has claimed responsibility for the Paris attacks, has lately become active in Jammu and Kashmir as well. The raising of ISIS flags in Kashmir is a very serious issue. After the human slaughter in Paris, we need to deal with this issue even more seriously,” the Sena said in an editorial in party mouthpiece ‘Saamana’.

File photo: Masked men displaying ISIS and Al Qaeda flags in Srinagar

In the wake of Paris terror attacks that claimed at least 129 lives, the Shiv Sena on Monday said that it was time India dealt with periodic incidents of waiving of ISIS flags in Kashmir with an “iron hand”. The Sena also noted that talks of human rights of terrorists should be shunned as they need to be rooted out completely.”ISIS, which has claimed responsibility for the Paris attacks, has lately become active in Jammu and Kashmir as well. The raising of ISIS flags in Kashmir is a very serious issue. After the human slaughter in Paris, we need to deal with this issue even more seriously,” the Sena said in an editorial in party mouthpiece ‘Saamana’.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The edit said that it was imperative for India to understand that Western countries’ fight against terror was limited to their own interests and “we need to fight terror in our own way.””Many countries including Pakistan have condemned the terror attacks in Paris. One can only laugh when a country like Pakistan condemns these attacks because the neighbouring country is a factory that makes terrorists.. But until these terror attacks happen on their soil, America and European nations won’t understand India’s pain.”Terrorists are not even leaving European nations now.Cracks are developing in their once impregnable security walls. This incident has claimed the largest number of lives after the Second World War. Europe needs to take lessons from this incident. Shun talks of human rights of terrorists and eliminate them from their roots,” the Sena said.

Indian Army captain Ashwini Kumar dies in Siachen avalanche in Jammu and Kashmir

Jammu: A captain of the Indian Army was killed in an avalanche on Saturday at the Siachen Glacier in Jammu and Kashmir’s Ladakh region, an official said.

Representational image. AFPRepresentational image. AFP

Representational image. AFP

“Captain Ashwini Kumar of Ladakh Scouts was killed when an army patrol was hit by an avalanche in the southern ridge of the Siachen Glacier,” Colonel S.D. Goswami, spokesman of the army’s Udhampur-based Northern Command, told IANS here.

The others in the army patrol were rescued, and the injured were being treated, he said.

Siachen is regarded as the world’s highest battlefield where the Indian and Pakistan Army face each other in an eyeball-to-eyeball situation.

IANS

Jammu and Kashmir to get its first handicrafts museum

The Divisional Commissioner asked the tourism department to submit a concept plan within a week for converting the heritage building into the museum.

Representational Image of handicrafts

dna Research & Archives
Jammu and Kashmir would get its first handicrafts museum over one-and-a-half acres of land at the exhibition ground in the heart of summer capital Srinagar.Asgar Hassan Samoon, Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir, has asked the concerned officials to devise a concept plan for converting old educational structure and adjacent land available at exhibition ground Srinagar into a handicrafts museum, an official spokesman said today.He said Samoon was addressing a meeting here to discuss usage of unused land and building near the exhibition ground, who also asked officials to keep into account the ambiance while devising the plan for the museum.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Divisional Commissioner asked the tourism department to submit a concept plan within a week for converting the heritage building into the museum, the spokesman said. Samoon also asked the officials to remove unauthorized mini-bus stand and vehicle parking from the area and demarcate the entire property.

Four months after suicide, failed student declared class topper

Distraught after being declared failed in his favourite subject, a 17-year-old electronics engineering student had committed suicide but four months on a re-evaluation has found that he not only passed the subject but topped his class.

Distraught after being declared failed in his favourite subject, a 17-year-old electronics engineering student had committed suicide but four months on a re-evaluation has found that he not only passed the subject but topped his class.The “callous” evaluation process has left the parents of Mohammad Adnan Hilal numbed, who feel that it is not a case of suicide but “murder” as their son actually secured 48 marks in Physics and not 28 as declared earlier.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>With the re-evaluation, Hilal, a first semester student of electronic engineering at Government Polytechnic College in Srinagar, secured around 70% aggregate marks in the first semester of the course, making him the class topper.However, it took authorities four long months to realise Hilal’s correct score.In Jammu and Kashmir, 33 out of 100 is the minimum marks required to pass an examination.Declared failed in Physics, a subject his family and friends claim he had mastery over, Adnan committed suicide in June soon after he checked his results on Internet. He jumped into River Jhelum and his body was fished out four days later.Adnan’s father, Hilal Ahmad Gilkar says his son’s death was not a suicide but a “murder” as he was forced to take the extreme step by the callousness of some people in the system.”It is a murder and people responsible for it need to be identified and acted against as per the service rules of the government,” said Gilkar as tears rolled down his eyes.Shattered by the loss of his son, Gilkar, recalls how his son had told him that he had answered all the questions in the Physics paper with ease.”When Adnan returned in the evening on the day of his examination, he informed me that he did well in Physics paper.”He told me there was no continuation sheet at the examination center so he had to write the rest of the answers on another answer sheet. He was confident that he had done well,” Gilkar, a guest faculty at Institute of Management and Public Administration (IMPA) here, said.After the death of his son, Gilkar applied for re-evaluation of his son’s Physics answer paper and was pushed further into grief as Adnan was declared pass in the paper The Jammu and Kashmir State Board of Technical Education (JKSBOTE), while admitting it as a “mistake”, said, “Such things happen in other universities as well”.

India wants cordial relations with Pakistan and Nepal: Home Minister Rajnath Singh

Asked about Nepal, which has been witnessing protests by Madhesis over adoption of a new Constitution, Rajnath Singh said New Delhi wants very good relations with Kathmandu too.

Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh
File Photo
PTI
India wants cordial relations with Pakistan and Nepal and will do everything to further improve ties with its neighbours, Home Minister Rajnath Singh said on Tuesday.”Pakistan is our neighbouring country. We want very cordial relations with Pakistan. But Pakistan too has to reciprocate,” he told reporters at a ‘Diwali Milan’.Asked about Nepal, which has been witnessing protests by Madhesis over adoption of a new Constitution, Singh said New Delhi wants very good relations with Kathmandu too.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”We want very good relations with Nepal too. We will do everything for betterment of our relations with our neighbours,” he said.Asked whether differences have crept in the ruling PDP- BJP alliance in Jammu and Kashmir, the Home Minister said the coalition government in the state will continue. “Alliance will continue. There is no threat to it,” he said.Commenting on the protests during the recent visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Jammu and Kashmir, Singh said such incidents had taken place in the past too.”But you should remember that only a handful people were there (in protests),” he said.Singh said law-and-order situation in Jammu and Kashmir has improved to a great extent and ever since the NDA government came to power in the Centre in May 2014, 165 militants belonging to Lashker-e-Taiba, Hizbul Mujahideen and others, were eliminated.Giving statistics about the infiltration attempts from across the border, he said in 2013, there were 277 infiltration attempts of which 97 were successful and security forces killed 67 militants during the year.In 2014, there were 220 attempts of infiltration in which 67 were successful and security forces killed 110 militants during that period. In 2015, till September 30, there were just 86 attempts of infiltration in which 86 were successful and 89 militants were killed.

Fallout of Bihar results: Pressure on PDP to say goodbye to BJP

Leading the charge is PDP Lok Sabha member from Srinagar Tariq Hameed Karra, who has asked his party bosses to wake up and come out of the alliance to salvage some pride in Jammu and Kashmir.

Clamour is growing within the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to walk out of the alliance with the BJP and realign with the secular forces taking a cue from the Bihar poll results.Leading the charge is PDP Lok Sabha member from Srinagar Tariq Hameed Karra, who has asked his party bosses to wake up and come out of the alliance to salvage some pride in Jammu and Kashmir.”It (defeat of NDA in Bihar) is wake up call. There is still time to salvage something. Walking out of the alliance is of course the only way to salvage (our pride). What we did (alliance with BJP) is antithesis. We might have committed mistake. But there is always a time when we can rectify the mistakes,” Karra told dna.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Karra, a former J&K finance minister who defeated National Conference president and former chief minister Farooq Abdullah in his pocket borough of Srinagar in 2014, said the door has been closed for “communal forces” and Bihar results is a window of opportunity for the secular forces of the country to realign.”Entire secular forces of the country should learn lessons from people of Bihar who deserve to be congratulated for showing the path. It is the time for the secular forces to realign because doors have been slammed for the communal forces in the country,” he said.PDP leader, who was not present at Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s rally in Srinagar on Saturday, said he would have been happy if the message of realignment of secular forces would have come from Jammu and Kashmir.”The message from Jammu and Kashmir would have been more forceful, meaningful and politically loaded. But unfortunately it did not happen. I would still say that there is still time to salvage,” said Karra.Main opposition National Conference (NC), which lost both Lok Sabha and assembly polls last year, went gaga over the defeat of NDA in Bihar elections.NC working president and former chief minister Omar Abdullah was among the first few leaders who called up Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar to congratulate him for the victory. “Spoke to Nitish Kumar Sahib to congratulate him on behalf of my father and myself for his great victory”, Omar tweeted.Without naming anyone, Omar poked fun over the “crackers in Pakistan” comment after the poll results showed Nitish winning landslide. “Sorry, it’s all the smoke from the crackers in neighboring Pakistan ;)”, said former chief minister.Even the separatist camp is rejoicing the victory of Nitish Kumar in Bihar. “It is indeed a good news that BJP led NDA has been defeated because successes had gone to their heads,” said a separatist leader requesting anonymity.

PM Modi announces Rs 80,000 crore package for Kashmir, says will revive its glory days

Highlighting the ‘Sabka Saath Sabka Vikas’ slogan, the Prime Minister said that he wants the entire country to be involved in the progress and development of Kashmir.

PM Narendra Modi speaking in Srinagar on Saturday

ANI
PM Narendra Modi on Saturday spoke at a public meeting in Srinagar, during a highly anticipated visit that saw massive security arrangements.”It is my privilege to come to Kashmir, this land draws me here,” Modi said according to ANI.”Last year during the floods, when Jammu and Kashmir was suffering, I was feeling the pain too. When Diwali came last year, it would have been easy for me to celebrate with friends in Delhi, but I decided to come to J&K,” he added.”My mother used to give me Rs 5 or Rs 11 on my birthday. She never gave me more than Rs 11. But last year she gave me Rs 5000 for the flood-affected people of Kashmir. Ye sanskaar ki taakat hai jo mujhe aapke dukh dard ko baantne ki prerna aur taakat deti hai (It is because of my upbringing that I find the motivation and strength to share your pain,” Modi said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Related Read: Amid massive security, mobile internet services blocked for PM Modi’s Kashmir visitHighlighting the ‘Sabka Saath Sabka Vikas’ slogan, the Prime Minister said that he wants the entire country to be involved in the progress and development of Kashmir.In an oblique criticism of militancy in Kashmir, and indicating the government efforts to boost state tourism, Modi said, “I want to bring back those days when the rest of India used to look forward to come and visit Kashmir”. “Kashmir has suffered a lot over the years, generations have seen their dreams being crushed. Main uss vishwas ko lekar nikla hoon ki mera Kashmir firse ek baar, wo hi jannat, wo din main apni aakhon key saamne dekh raha hoon (I firmly believe that Kashmir will once again be the heaven that it was in the past. I can see the bright future before my eyes,” he said.Alluding to the Transparency International report about India now being a less corrupt country than China, Modi said, “Some people said India would never catch up with China. But today, they say India is not only catching up but leading China. I do not just dream of a bright future. I am trying to make that dream a reality.”Batting for the integrity of Kashmir, Modi said that India is incomplete without Kashmir’s contribution. He praised cricketer Parvez Rasool, who has made it big in domestic cricket and knocked on the doors of the Indian cricket team. However, Modi lamented that such a state cannot have a cricket stadium of its own. “This is the land that gave birth to Sufism, which taught us to bring everyone together. The Central government will work together with the Jammu and Kashmir government. It is imperative to bring every family out of crisis here. For the past few years Kashmiri youth are performing well in IITs, IIMs, IAS. And I am ready to do everything possible for them. The solution to every problem of ours is in providing employment to the youth. When Sachin Tendulkar, Virender Sehwag hit sixes, the wood for the bat came from Kashmir. Why should there be no cricket in the land where Parvez Rasool comes from? “, he said. “No matter how much the world advances, without humanity we are nowhere. If at least 5% of the expatriates who are now living abroad in Dubai or other places return to Kashmir, the state will ace in development,” the PM opined.Modi then announced a special package of Rs 80,000 crore for the Skill development initiative in Jammu and Kashmir, under the Skill India programme. He said more funds would be released soon, ending on a high note.

Amid massive security, mobile internet services blocked for PM Modi’s Kashmir visit

The officials said all service providers had been directed to disconnect the mobile internet services from 10 am till the Prime Minister leaves the Valley.

PM Narendra Modi

dna Research & Archives
Mobile internet services in Kashmir Valley were blocked this morning as a precautionary measure in view of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s rally here.”Mobile internet services have been temporarily discontinued in the Valley in the wake of the PM’s visit,” officials said. They said it was a precautionary measure in view of the high profile visit.The officials said all service providers had been directed to disconnect the mobile internet services from 10 am till the Prime Minister leaves the Valley. However, broadband services on BSNL were working.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Modi is scheduled to address a public rally at Sher-e- Kashmir Cricket Stadium at Sonawar. The Prime Minister, after addressing the rally, is scheduled to inaugurate 450 megawatt Baglihar Phase II power project in Ramban district on Jammu-Srinagar National Highway.He is also scheduled to lay the foundation stone of four-laning of Udhampur-Ramban stretch of the National Highway. The project, once completed, will reduce the travelling time between Srinagar and Jammu – the twin capitals of the state – by nearly two hours.Related Read: Massive security clampdown in Kashmir, expectations high for Narendra Modi visit

Crowd sourced, dissent nipped in the bud: In J&K, PM Modi hopes to woo Pandits, Partition refugees

The rehabilitation and civic rights of displaced groups may seem like benign welfare measures. In most places, they would be. In Jammu and Kashmir, however, this is one of the trickiest issues which Prime Minister Narendra Modi will have to deal with when he addresses a carefully orchestrated public meeting in Srinagar on Saturday.

The Pandit community, displaced from the Valley in 1990, and refugees from West Pakistan who have settled in Jammu since 1947 will both be watching with narrowed eyes when the Prime Minister speaks. While most people in the state are agog with speculation about the size of the monetary ‘package’ the prime minister will announce, these two communities have particular hopes.

Though neither is sizeable, both were vocal backers of Modi’s BJP during both the Lok Sabha and the assembly elections in 2014. More politically crucial, both have great support among the BJP’s core base across north India. Although the prime minister has timed his visit such that his announcements in Kashmir do not affect the Bihar elections, frustration among these two small but vital constituencies could be costly for his party.

PM Modi. PTI

PM Modi. PTI

The requirements of both communities have become intensely contentious. The Partition refugees in Jammu have lacked civic rights since 1947. They are not recognized as state subjects, and so cannot vote in assembly elections, own property, get state subsidies or certain categories of admission.

Giving them these civic rights has been an explosive political issue, since many Kashmiris view it as demographic dilution of the state’s Muslim majority. Being Partition refugees, however, they are part of the BJP’s core constituency. They expect much from Modi, and his party managers know that not responding to their expectations could become a future campaign issue against the party.

Resettlement of Pandits has already become controversial over the past few months. Leading Pandit groups have asked for special areas to be chalked out for them in the Valley. The Centre responded earlier this year by announcing ‘composite townships’ for them. That term was variously interpreted, and pilloried by many in Kashmir.

Several Pandits argue that, in light of the terror they experienced when they fled the Valley in 1990, they do not feel secure unless they are among a majority of their own. Most Kashmiri Muslims fiercely resist any kind of special zones, holding that Pandit families are most welcome to resettle scattered among the majority population, but not to build separate ghettos.

Mehbooba Mufti, president of the People’s Democratic Party, has taken that stand publicly. The PDP rules the state in coalition with the BJP and the much smaller People’s Conference of Sajad Lone. All three parties are straining every sinew to ensure that the prime minister’s public meeting on Saturday is a success.

Dr Jitendra Singh, Minister of State in the Prime Minister’s Office, and Ram Madhav, BJP general secretary in charge, both arrived in Srinagar on Friday to join in preparations. Dr Singh hails from Jammu and was a leading light of the 2008 agitations which boosted the BJP hugely in the Jammu region.

At one level, the success of all the preparations will be judged negatively – if Modi is not challenged by any slogans or flags. Hundreds of young men have been detained over the past week and curfew-like restrictions will be imposed on Saturday to ensure that no protestors get to the site of the public meeting.

Every MLA of the coalition has been given a quota to add to the audience. Sajad Lone has been the most enthusiastic about mobilizing a crowd. Srinagar is agog with talk of daily-wagers, police trainees and Special Police Officers augmenting the prime minister’s audience.

The Jammu-Srinagar highway is closed, so that vehicles bringing people mobilized by BJP MLAs have easy access. Many were brought to the Valley in buses on Friday and housed there overnight.

MLA Rashid Ahmed, who was recently in the limelight after hosting a beef party, has been arrested ahead of the prime minister’s visit. He had announced that he would receive Modi with black flags. Leaders of the Hurriyat Conference and other separatist groups are under house arrest, also since Wednesday.

Already over the past couple of days, there have been police barricades and checks on different arterial roads across the Valley. A bomb-proof BMW and several other luxury vehicles have arrived in Kashmir for the prime minister’s visit.

All this back-breaking logistical effort by the police force and the ruling coalition partners could easily come to naught if any protests were to surface despite all the repression that has been brought to bear.

An even greater source of tension for the organizers is the huge question that hangs over whether the prime minister’s announcements will satisfy the diverse array of political expectations in this currently polarized state. Such small but politically salient groups as the Pandits and the Partition refugees in Jammu could prove vital.

PM rally: Omar Abdullah says state government using police to muster crowd

“Similar instructions given to SPOs, Anganwari workers & daily wagers to make up the numbers for PM’s rally because PDP workers reluctant,” the former Chief Minister said, adding “How else will they make up the numbers & produce a gathering for the cameras & channels?”

Opposition National Conference leader Omar Abdullah on Friday alleged that security of his “colleagues” has been reduced as the state government has directed police personnel and others to attend Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s rally here tomorrow to muster the numbers.On the eve of Modi’s visit, he also said that the state government was using the official machinery for tomorrow’s rally, which was “shameless”.”Colleagues tell me that their JK police guard has been drastically scaled down & the personnel ordered to participate in the 7th Nov rally (of the Prime Minister),” Omar tweeted.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”Similar instructions given to SPOs, Anganwari workers & daily wagers to make up the numbers for PM’s rally because PDP workers reluctant,” the former Chief Minister said, adding “How else will they make up the numbers & produce a gathering for the cameras & channels?”In another tweet, Omar said it was “shameless” on part of the government to use state apparatus for Modi’s rally.”Just saw State Govt employees in an AMBULANCE tying up banners welcoming the PM on behalf of the state Health Minister. #Shameless,” he added.The Prime Minister, who will inaugurate Baglihar PhaseII power project at Ramban on Jammu-Srinagar national highway, is scheduled to address a public rally at Sher-e-Kashmir Cricket Stadium on Saturday.Modi will also lay foundation stone for four-laning of Jammu-Srinagar national highway from Udhampur to Ramban.

BSF, Pak Rangers hold meeting to ensure peace border

A casual Wing Commander-Commandant level meeting was held between Pak Rangers and BSF at Mangu Chak Border Out Post (BOP) along International Border (IB) in Samba sector.

A Commandant-Commander-level meeting the Border Security Force and Pakistan Rangers was held in Samba sector of Jammu and Kashmir to reiterate commitment to peace along the Indo-Pak border during cultivation by farmers on both sides.A casual Wing Commander-Commandant level meeting was held between Pak Rangers and BSF at Mangu Chak Border Out Post (BOP) along International Border (IB) in Samba sector of J&K on Tuesday, a BSF officer said here on Wednesday. The Pakistan side was led by Wing Commander Aseem Bhatti and while Officiating Commandant Y B Yadav represented the BSF at the meeting, which was held in cordial manner.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>They discussed issues of maintenance of peace along borderline during the cultivation by border farmers, cleaning thick growth of grass (Sarkanda) along zero-line and other issues, the officer said. The two sides committed to maintenance of peace along the borderline, he added.

India hits back at Pakistan, says it must stop human rights violations in PoK before sermonising

In her statement, Lodhi had repeated Pakistan’s call for UN Security Council resolutions to be implemented in the state and said fulfilling promise of self-determination to the Kashmiri people is “indispensable” to establishing lasting peace and stability in South Asia.

India on Tuesday hit back at Pakistan for raking up the Kashmir issue at the UN again, saying it should first stop human rights violations in PoK and ensure the right of self-determination for the victims before “sermonising” others on it.Visiting Member of Parliament Rattan Lal Kataria rejected the “unwarranted” references to Jammu and Kashmir made by Pakistan’s envoy to the UN Maleeha Lodhi in the Third Committee of the General Assembly on ‘Right to self- determination’ yesterday.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Kataria said it is very “ironical” that comments on Kashmir and self-determination “come from a country which is persisting with its illegal occupation of part of the Indian State of Jammu & Kashmir and consistently denying human rights of the occupied territory.””Pakistan should first stop human rights violations in Pakistan occupied Jammu and Kashmir and ensure the right of self-determination for the victims before sermonising others on it,” he said in his statement to the committee here.In her statement, Lodhi had repeated Pakistan’s call for UN Security Council resolutions to be implemented in the state and said fulfilling promise of self-determination to the Kashmiri people is “indispensable” to establishing lasting peace and stability in South Asia.”The continued suffering of Kashmiri women, children and men should shake the collective conscience of the international community,” Lodhi had said.”The 70th Anniversary of the United Nations ought to be a catalyst to spur this body into action, and not just more words. Fulfilment of the long-held promise of self- determination to the Kashmiri people is urgent as well as indispensable to establishing lasting peace and stability in South Asia,” she had said.Kataria said UN and other international fora should not be used to selectively redefine some of the basic principles of UN Charter, such as self-determination, and to “abuse them for subversive political agendas to encourage secession and to undermine pluralistic and democratic state.” He asserted that it would be suffice to say that Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India.The people of Jammu and Kashmir exercised their right to self-determination at the time of India’s independence and have since then regularly participated in free, fair and open elections at all levels, Kataria said.The elections have been held under the scrutiny of international media and opinion, which has not faulted the electoral process, he argued.”The 65% record voter turnout in the 2014 election in Jammu and Kashmir, despite the threats from Pakistan-based terror groups, is a resounding response by our people,” Kataria said.

Modi keeping silent on Dadri lynching just to win Bihar elections: Arun Shourie

New Delhi: Former Union Minister Arun Shourie on Monday accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of deliberately maintaining silence on incidents like Dadri lynching while his ministerial and party colleagues kept the issue “alive” merely to win Bihar elections.

He also agreed with the suggestion that Modi and BJP chief Amit Shah were pitting one community against another in Bihar and cited a Pakistani analyst to say that while the neighbouring country was trying to get out of the pit, India was slowly going down its way.

Arun Shourie. AFP

Arun Shourie. AFP

The former BJP insider attacked Finance Minister Arun Jaitley’s defence of Modi that he was the worst victim of intolerance since 2002, saying this was the worst defence he had heard and Modi “in his mind will get the fullest justification for being vengeful”.

Coming out in support of writers, authors and artistes returning their awards against the “climate of intolerance”, he told Karan Thapar on India Today channel that they are “conscience-keepers” of the country and their motives cannot be questioned.

Praising scientists like PM Bhargava and Infosys founder NR Narayana Murthy, who have expressed concern over these incidents, Shourie questioned how these people can be called rabid, a term used by Jaitley.

These people have contributed immensely to the country and those who attacked them have not read a book in the last 20 years. “Those who cannot write two paragraphs are sitting in judgement over writers.”

Rejecting BJP leaders’ oft-repeated statements that the Prime Minister cannot be expected to speak on any and every issue, Shourie said he was exactly doing that and not speaking on issues he should.

“Prime Minister is not a section officer of the homoeopathy department. He is not head of a department. He is the Prime Minister. He has to show the country the moral path. He has to set moral standards,” he said.

Shourie referred to Modi’s tweets on issues like Union Minister Mahesh Sharma’s birthday soon after Dadri lynching, James Cameron’s birthday, the stampede in Mecca and the blast in Ankara.

“But he kept silent on the Dadri incident and incidents like killing of two Dalit children (in Haryana). He is keeping silent while his party colleagues and ministers are keeping the issue alive,” he said, asserting that Modi’s silence was more deliberate than ignoring them.

Asked if Modi’s silence was political, he said “I think so”. “You can’t have it both ways. You are a very strong leader but cannot control your members.”

Referring to Sharma’s controversial comments on former President Abdul Kalam being a nationalist despite being a Muslim, he said allotting him the house in which Kalam lived was like “spitting in the face of people”. “This is really symbolic.”

To a question, he said it was all intended to win Bihar elections at any cost.

Modi does not realise the consequences of his silence and this fire will not only burn him but the whole country, he said, adding these issues will strain the social fabric of the country.

With his speeches in Bihar in which he accused grand alliance leaders of plotting to steal the quota for OBCs, SCs and STs and hand it over to Muslims, Modi had lowered himself to the level of Lalu Prasad while Nitish Kumar looked like a statesman, Shourie said.

He also rejected Shah’s statement that crackers will be burst in Pakistan if BJP loses in Bihar and said in fact things were different now. In this context he quoted a Pakistani analyst to say crackers were already being burst there as Modi was the best thing to have happened to it.

Referring to the killing of a Kashmiri truck driver in the Jammu region on suspicion of cow smuggling, Shourie said unnecessarily such incidents gave a handle to secessionists.

PTI

BJP slams Congress, says development is our only vested interest in J&K

Following Congress’ defeat in Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council (LAHDC) elections last month, the party leaders had alleged that BJP has vested interests in Jammu and Kashmir.

BJP on Monday countered Congress’ allegation that the party was dividing the people of Jammu and Kashmir along communal lines, saying its only vested interest in the state is development and to reinvigorate normalcy through it.”It is both dishonourable and unprincipled on Congress’ part to lead people into believing that BJP has vested interests in Jammu and Kashmir and is dividing the people of the state along communal lines,” state BJP spokesperson Arun Gupta said.”Everyone at the end of the day needs reassurance in the form of security of employment, food and shelter. These are the fruits of development and it is BJP’s only vested interest in Jammu and Kashmir,” he said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”Is working towards development of the state communal? Development provides employment in turn. Does Congress intend to push the idea that employment and prosperity is communal?” Gupta asked.”Decades of inefficient rule by the two players has left the state in the lurch. The BJP-PDP combine is looking to reinvigorate normalcy in the state,” he added.Following Congress’ defeat in Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council (LAHDC) elections last month, the party leaders had alleged that BJP has vested interests in Jammu and Kashmir and is dividing the people of the state on communal lines.Criticising the “double-talk of secularism that Congress is employing in the state”, Gupta questioned the intent behind the “new found anti-India enthusiasm” displayed by Congress and National Conference (NC).”Congress along with NC completely opposed the Accession day celebrations. Aren’t they actually trying to confuse the people over the conclusiveness of J&K s Accession to India? Are they not trying to instigate the people in Kashmir on communal lines?” Gupta asked.Commenting on defeat of Congress in LAHDC polls, he said, “People of Ladakh are sharp and have an astute understanding of what they want. Congress and NC’s divisive designs fell flat on their face in elections as people want to see development.””Once the results of true development start showing, it is only a matter of time that the populace in Kashmir as well will start opening their eyes to the politics of hate that the region’s two major players have been propagating,” he said.

Separatists gear up for showdown during Narendra Modi’s Jammu & Kashmir visit

An advocate and his associate have launched an online petition urging chief minister Mufti Mohommad Sayeed to allow political spaces to both Prime Minister and Syed Ali Shah Geelani’s rally on November 7.

From filing online petition to launching door-to-door campaign for optimising the social media outreach, Hurriyat hardliners led by Syed Ali Shah Geelani are pulling out all stops to make its “Million March” successful in a bid to counter Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s rally in Srinagar on November 7.An advocate and his associate have launched an online petition urging chief minister Mufti Mohommad Sayeed to allow political spaces to both Prime Minister and Syed Ali Shah Geelani’s rally on November 7.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”We appeal to the conscious citizens of the world to support the petition for providing democracy a chance in Kashmir which has been politically eroded on ground in Kashmir since 1947,” reads the online petition.Geelani-led Hurriyat Conference held a meeting of its Majlis-e-Shura (Advisory Council) in which all the 24 constituents participated on Saturday. It was decided that the leaders will span across the Jammu and Kashmir to mobilise support for the proposed march.”Our leaders will go village to village and door to door to mobilise support for the March. It will be a historic day because it will prove on whose side the people are,” said Ayaz Akbar, spokesman of Geelani-led Hurriyat.Hurriyat hardliners also decided to maximise its social media outreach to mobilise the masses particularly youth to join the March. Geelani urged the youth to publicize “Challo, Challo…TRC Challo” slogan in the form of wall paintings, graffiti and posters. Youth were also asked to upload these slogans on the internet and social networking sites.Geelani said that the Million March will refresh the memories of the mass gatherings of 2008. “All the Kashmiris living abroad are requested to organise small gatherings at their respective places in support of the march,” he said.Hurriyat Conference is also sending a formal letter to the deputy commissioner Srinagar seeking permission to hold the Million March at TRC grounds. The venue of the separatist rally is just 200 meters away from where Modi is scheduled to hold its rally at Sher-e-Kashmir Cricket Stadium on Saturday.”We are confident that the authorities will grant us permission.We will take all the responsibility for peaceful and disciplined march. In case the permission is not granted Majlis-e-Shura will sit again and decide future course of action”, said Akbar.Jammu and Kashmir government on the other side said Modi’s visit will give fresh impetus to ‘Agenda of Alliance’: of PDP-BJP alliance in the state.”People in the state are expecting the Prime Minister to make tangible confidence building measures aimed at addressing the political and economic challenges confronting Jammu and Kashmir”, said Haseeb Drabu, J&K minister for finance, labour, employment and culture.

Waitlisted passengers will now get confirmed berth under new railways scheme

Known as Viklap, the alternative train accommodation scheme will take off in trains running on Delhi-Lucknow and Delhi-Jammu sectors from November 1, on a pilot basis.

Indian Railways

Getty Images
Railways is launching a new scheme tomorrow under which waitlisted passengers can get confirmed accommodation in next alternative train if they opt for the option while booking their tickets online.Known as Viklap, the alternative train accommodation scheme will take off in trains running on Delhi-Lucknow and Delhi-Jammu sectors from November 1, on a pilot basis.Initially, Vikalp scheme will be available only for the tickets booked through internet for six months and option will be limited to mail and express trains on the two selected routes, said a senior Railway Ministry official. As per the scheme, waitlisted passengers of a train would be given option of getting confirmed accommodation in the next train running on the route.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Railway aims to achieve the twin objectives of providing confirmed accommodation to waitlisted passengers and ensure optimal utilisation of available accommodation by this scheme. While there is a huge demand for train berths in certain sector round the year, some routes witness increased rush during festive season.Describing the scheme as a “passenger friendly” move to provide confirmed accommodation to waitlisted passengers in alternative trains, the official said, the scheme will be extended to reservation booking counters and also on other routes after getting the feedback.Passenger, if opts for the Vikalp scheme while booking tickets online, will get SMS alert on their mobile phone about getting confirmed accommodation in alternative train. As per the scheme, there would be no extra charges taken from the passenger or any refund provided for the difference of fare.The name of passenger who have been provided accommodation in the alternative train will not figure in the waitlisted charts of their original train, the official said, adding a separate list of passengers transferred in alternative train will be pasted along with the confirmed and waitlist charts.

After Musharraf’s confession, BJP wants Pakistan to be declared as ‘rogue state’

Jammu: BJP on Thursday said the world community should take serious note of revelation by former Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf that his country had trained and sponsored terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir and declare it as a “rogue state”.

State BJP spokesman Virender Gupta said Musharraf‘s confession vindicates India’s stand that Pakistan is the mother of terrorism.

Pervez Mushharaf. Reuters

Pervez Mushharaf. Reuters

He said the international community should take cognizance of the revelation and act firmly against Pakistan, whose actions are dangerous for the peace and security of not only India but the world community.

“The BJP demands that Pakistan should be declared as a rogue state and it be isolated by imposing political, economic and military sanctions in view recent admission Musharraf that Pakistan trained and sponsored religious terrorism in Kashmir,” Gupta said.

Musharraf recently said in an interview to a Pakistani channel that Pakistan had supported and trained terror groups like the Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) in 1990s for fanning militancy in Kashmir.

Musharaf’s assertion that “Taliban, Haqqani, Osama Bin Laden, Zawahiri, Hafiz Lakhvi are Heroes of Pakistan” speaks of how much respect, love and affection our neighbor country has towards these enemies of humanity,” Gupta said.

PTI

Earthquake claims four lives in Jammu and Kashmir, 20 others injured

Srinagar: Four persons, including three women died while 20 others were injured in Jammu and Kashmir, following the 7.5 magnitude earthquake that jolted northern India.

“As per the latest reports presented by DGP K Rajindra Kumar and Divisional Commissioner Kashmir, Asgar Samoon, four people – two each in Kashmir and Jammu divisions – have died, while 20 persons were injured in Monday’s earthquake,” an official spokesman said.

A total of 53 houses were damaged in the quake, he said.

An injured people take first-aid at Govt Medical College hospital after earthquake in Jammu on Monday. PTI

An injured people take first-aid at Govt Medical College hospital after earthquake in Jammu on Monday. PTI

The officers were briefing a meeting chaired by Minister for Relief and Rehabilitation Syed Basharat Bukhari in Srinagar. This was the second meeting in 24 hours to review the impact of the earthquake in the state.

The spokesman said while two women died in Kashmir division, a woman and a boy were reported dead in Jammu division.

With regard to loss of property, the spokesman said around 40 residential houses in Kashmir Division and 13 in Jammu Division have been damaged besides some non-residential structures have also been damaged.

Expressing solidarity with the bereaved families, the Minister gave directions to the Divisional Commissioner to ensure immediate assessment of the damage to property by the concerned Deputy Commissioners so that relief is paid to the affected as per norms.

Bukhari also addressed a meeting of Relief and Rehabilitation Department and reviewed the status with regard to establishment of Emergency Operation Centers (EOCs) at the divisional and district levels in the state for quick and immediate response in case of any eventuality.

A massive earthquake measuring 7.5 on Richter scale and lasting for about a minute jolted north India on Tuesday, with panic-stricken people rushing out of houses.

The earthquake epicentred in the Hindukush mountain range in Afghanistan.

PTI

Pakistan Rangers wing commander to meet BSF chief today to discuss ceasefire violations

The meeting has been arranged to discuss Pakistan’s ceasefire violations along the International Border (IB).

BSF jawans

PTI
The wing commander of the Pakistan Rangers is set to meet BSF chief Devendra Kumar Pathak at 1 pm on Tuesday, at Octorai Post in RS Pura sector of Jammu and Kashmir, reports India Today.The meeting has been arranged to discuss Pakistan’s ceasefire violations along the International Border (IB).The top commander of Pakistan’s border guarding force on had Monday called up the BSF chief to urge Indian troops to stop their retaliatory firing over escalated ceasefire violations by the neighbouring country following which both sides agreed to halt the exchanges.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Amidst a spurt in ceasefire violations along the Indo- Pakistan International Border (IB) in Jammu and Kashmir, the chief of Pakistan Rangers called up BSF DG DK Pathak urging the Indian side to stop its retaliatory firing.Sources said to PTI that Rangers Director General Major General Umar Farooq Burki told the BSF chief that they have suffered “very heavy” damage because of the BSF response and urged the border guarding force to stop its firing. The Border Security Force (BSF) DG told his counterpart that there will be no retaliation if Pakistan does not initiate the firing, they added.Also read: 5 things you need to know about a flag meet​The Rangers DG, sources said, rang his BSF counterpart this afternoon on the newly-operationalised hotline between the two sides and urged Pathak to ensure tranquillity and stop firing on the border. There have been repeated ceasefire violations by Pakistani troops since October 23.”Both sides agreed to stop the firing, but BSF made it clear that they will retaliate if provoked,” they said.The Indo-Pakistan IB in Jammu and Kashmir was peaceful since the Rangers and BSF held a DG-level conference last month in the national capital recently in September, but fresh violations by the other side began last week. The two sides had decided to create a new mechanism and the two Directors General (DsG) had agreed to activate a hotline to get in direct touch in case of any problems on the border they guard.Pakistan on Monday had targeted 30 border outposts and several hamlets with mortar bombs and heavy machine gun firing in the Samba and Kathua districts of J-K, leaving a civilian injured as ceasefire violations by the neighbouring country it continued for the fourth day. The recent instances of ceasefire violations have left a civilian dead and seven others injured till now on the Indian side.(With PTI inputs)

68 years of Kashmir accession: What actually happened on 27 October, 1947?

It is difficult to imagine the cliffhanging drama that unfolded as Indian troops landed in Kashmir on 27 October 1947. The place was in limbo, the Maharaja having left Srinagar for Jammu in a long convoy at 2 am on the night of 25 October, a few hours after signing the accession.

At the Cabinet meeting on 26 October, Nehru insisted that the accession must have the people’s backing. So, Sheikh Adbullah sent in a quickly scribbled note on behalf of the National Conference. He was sitting in the next room, having brought his family down to Delhi.

A boy cycles past a wall damaged in alleged firing from the Pakistan side of the Kashmir border, at Mawa village, in Samba district, about 58 kilometers south of Jammu, on Saturday, 24 October, 2015. APA boy cycles past a wall damaged in alleged firing from the Pakistan side of the Kashmir border, at Mawa village, in Samba district, about 58 kilometers south of Jammu, on Saturday, 24 October, 2015. AP

A boy cycles past a wall damaged in alleged firing from the Pakistan side of the Kashmir border, at Mawa village, in Samba district, about 58 kilometers south of Jammu, on Saturday, 24 October, 2015. AP

At dusk, companies of the Sikh regiment were scrambled from their Gurgaon billet. On the morning of 27 October, Dakotas flew them to Srinagar. Anxious National Conference leaders were scanning the skies over Rangret airport, their hopes fading, by the time the first plane arrived at 10 am. The heroic Maqbool Sherwani had by then turned the marauding tribesmen towards Shadipura from Shalteng. Chancing upon him as he tried out his new motorcycle, those invaders from Pakistan had asked him for directions.

By afternoon, the tarmac was a broken mess; it had been built only for the Maharaja’s small private plane. By then, the badly-briefed soldiers had killed their first quarry, mistaking four ordinary Kashmiris for invaders while passing Barzula village a couple of kilometres before what was then the edge of the city.

The dramatic events of that day have left a legacy of divergent narratives. Those divergences are a major reason why many Kashmiris and the majority of Indians so often talk past each other. Each seems unreasonable to the other. That of course is a recipe for deadlock and increased resentment.

A common impression among many Kashmiris is that the army’s arrival on this day that year was a temporary measure, meant only to save Kashmiris from the tribesmen. That is one cause for the hartal call in Kashmir today.

In fact, when Maharaja Hari Singh first sought urgent military aid on 24 October, the cabinet had refused to send troops unless the Maharaja acceded, arguing that the Indian Army could only defend Indian territory. This was not Nehru’s idea, or Patel’s, but that of Governor-General Mountbatten (who chaired the Defence Committee of the Cabinet).

That brings one to another strongly held idea in many Kashmiri minds – that the accession itself was temporary. They conclude this by clubbing the accession with the promise of a plebiscite. Most Indians, on the other hand, separate the two. The accession was final, as were the accessions of the other 500 or so potentates.

The real differences are that this one was conditional (only for defence, external relations and communication), and this Maharaja did not follow up with an instrument of merger. That means that the state of Jammu and Kashmir continues to have a legal standing, and cannot be reconstituted into alternative states – as Andhra Pradesh recently was.

The boot is generally on the other foot when it comes to narratives regarding Article 370. Many Indians think this was a temporary provision until a final decision on the state’s future was taken by a separate constituent assembly of the state. Most Kashmiris insist that 370 is a permanent part of India’s constitution, the hinge upon which the state’s relationship with the Union is based.

That brings one to divergent perceptions about the constituent assembly. The state’s constitution clearly states that it is an integral part of India. Union Home Minister GB Pant used that term for the first time in Parliament in 1958, soon after the state’s constitution took effect on 26 January that year. Once the state’s constitution was in place, it (and the assemblies elected under its mandate) dictated how much control the Union would have.

Unfortunately, a demand for integration has been so often bandied about by RSS activists that many Indians now confuse it for just an RSS rant. Indeed, RSS activists tend to confuse it with Bharatiya Jana Sangh founder Syama Prasad Mookerji’s ek nishan, ek vidhan, ek pradhan campaign of 1952-53.

Mookerji’s campaign was specifically against the New Delhi agreement of 1952, negotiated by committees headed by Maulana Azad on behalf of the Union and Sheikh Abdullah on behalf of the state. And that agreement was in the same bracket as Article 370. It was meant to determine this particularly prickly Centre-state relationship until the state’s constitution was ready.

Ironically, many of the Kashmiris who contest integration and insist that Article 370 is permanent and sacrosanct also hold fast to the state’s separate constitution. Generally, they neither question the rigged elections through which that assembly was constituted, nor the processes through which the proceedings were managed.

Actually, one can go round and round in circles arguing about each of the above points. Finally, all the divergences regarding the permanence or otherwise of what happened that fateful day and subsequently, boil down to a fundamental difference in perspective – whether one wants to interpret all that happened as meant to pave the way for Kashmir’s inclusion in India, or as meant to open doors that might lead to its independence.

(David Devadas, an expert on political and international affairs, is the author of In Search of a Future, the Story of Kashmir)

Massive Afghanistan earthquake kills three people in Jammu & Kashmir, India

Srinagar: Two elderly women died of cardiac arrest in Kashmir Valley apparently due to panic triggered by earthquake on Monday, which also killed a youth in Reasi district of Jammu and Kashmir.

Ten people, including two army soldiers, were injured in the earthquake which rattled the state on Monday afternoon. Nearly three dozen buildings and public infrastructure were also damaged due to it in Kashmir Valley.

Representational image. Reuters

Representational image. Reuters

Sixty-five year old Zoona Begum of Mohalla Mir Sahab in old town Baramulla suffered a massive heart attack as she was rushing towards a safer place when the earthquake hit around 2:40 pm, police said.

Another elderly woman died in similar circumstances in Bijbehara area of south Kashmir’s Anantnag district, a police official said.

Fatima, 80, of Ahangar Mohalla was pronounced dead by doctors as she was taken to district hospital Anantnag, the official said.

In Reasi district, a 16-year-old youth was killed while his father received serious injuries after they were hit by shooting stones triggered by earthquake.

“A 16-year-old boy identified as Mohammed Ashraf died on the spot when he was hit on head by shooting stones triggered by the earthquake in remote Bathodi village of Reasi district,” a police officer said in Jammu.

Meanwhile, two army personnel were injured when their bunker collapsed after tremors in Sopore town of Baramulla district, 55 kms from Srinagar.

The bunker collapsed inside Ganjoo house, where an army unit is camping, injuring to two soldiers, following which they were taken to the hospital, an official said.

He said six persons were reported injured in Pulwama district of south Kashmir, while another person jumped from the window of his house during the tremor and suffered fracture.

Quoting preliminary information, the official said over two dozen residential houses and six police buildings suffered damages in different parts of Kashmir Valley.

“We are still collecting the details and the figures of the damage to the public and private infrastructure might go up,” he said.

He said Jehangir chowk flyover suffered minor damage as a gap on a joint widened slightly.

A team of engineers visited the flyover and after inspection allowed the traffic to move on the road, the official said.

A vehicle was damaged at Rafiabad in Baramulla district when a tree got uprooted and fell on it. However, there was no immediate report of any casualty in the incident, the officials said.

A massive earthquake measuring 7.5 on Richter scale on Monday jolted north India, with panic-stricken people rushing out of houses and buildings that shook during the temblor lasting almost a minute.

In Reasi, the youth and his father had gone to graze cattle when the incident took place.

“Both of them had gone to graze their cattle in the forest when they were hit by the shooting stones which were triggered by the strong earthquake,” the police officer said.

In Ramban district, one person was injured when a shooting stone hit his vehicle during the earthquake.

“Mohammad Ramzan was injured when his vehicle was hit by a shooting stone in Kawna area of Ramban district during the earthquake,” a police officer said.

He said that five houses were also damaged in Khari town of Ramban district due to the earthquake.

PTI

Villagers living along border areas asked to remain vigilant after Pakistan shelling

Jammu: With Pakistani troops repeatedly shelling border areas, authorities have advised villagers living along the Indo-Pak border in Samba district to remain vigilant and stay indoors.

Representational image. Reuters

Representational image. Reuters

“People (of border hamlets along International Border) should remain vigilant. Villagers are advised to stay indoors and at safer places during cross border shelling”, Minister for Industries and Commerce, Chander Prakash Ganga said.

Ganga visited villages of Samba district which were hit by cross border firing and assessed damages due to mortar shelling in Mawa and Bainglarg villages in Samba district on Saturday.

While interacting with the affected families, the Minister assured them of all necessary help from the Government and directed civil administration and police to be vigilant in the areas and respond at times of border shelling.

He also directed officers to remain present in their respective jurisdictions to deal with any emergency situation.

SSP Samba Joginder Singh informed the minister that bullet proof vehicles have been deployed which could be used in case of any emergency.

During his visit to the villages, the Minister handed over relief from Red Cross Society to villager Kalu Ram who lost his cattle in the firing.

Later, he also visited village Bainglarh, and gave away relief from Red Cross Society to Kishore Sharma who also lost his cattle in the firing.

Villagers also informed the Minister about various local issues including construction of permanent bunkers, hike in compensation given to persons killed in cross border firing and creation of a separate township for people living in border areas.

PTI

Pakistan Rangers target 9 BSF posts in overnight firing, 1 civilian injured

Jammu: Pakistan Rangers violated the ceasefire again with heavy firing and mortar shelling overnight that targeted nine Border Outposts (BoPs) of BSF and civilian areas in Samba district along the IB, leaving a labourer injured.

After over a month-long lull, Pakistani troops on Friday resumed the ceasefire violations along the international border, killing one civilian and injuring three so far.

Representational image. PTIRepresentational image. PTI

Representational image. PTI

“Pak Rangers resorted to unprovoked firing on BSF posts along IB in Samba sector from 2025 hours last night”, a BSF officer said in Jammu on Saturday, adding BSF troops carried out effective retaliation.

The Rangers fired on nine BoPs of BSF along IB in areas between River Basantar and River Treva in Samba sector, he said, adding that they used 82, 82 and 51 mm mortar bombs at few places along IB.

BSF troops guarding the borderline retaliated resulting in exchanges which continued till 0220 hours today, he said, adding that there was no loss of life on Indian side but a civilian, who was working as a labourer in maintenance work near fence, was injured.

A civilian was killed and two others were injured last evening when Pakistani troops indulged in heavy firing along IB in Mangu Chak border outpost.

The ceasefire violations, which became a routine, had stopped after the Director General (DG)-level talks between BSF and Pakistan Rangers on 12 September.

PTI

Keeping politicians’ foot-in-mouth trend alive, Azam Khan says mobile phones cause rape

Rampur: Samajwadi Party leader Azam Khan on Friday held mobile phones responsible for rape of minors, saying misuse of these gadgets by the younger generation has led to an alarming rise in such cases.

Azam Khan came up with his own ridiculous idea of what causes rape. PTI

Azam Khan came up with his own ridiculous idea of what causes rape. PTI

He also demanded that the Centre should take steps to divert the attention of the younger generation towards constructive activities.

“Two-and-a-half-year olds getting raped, why? It’s because of mobile phones. Even in villages people can download things,” he said in an apparent reference to the alleged rape of a two-and-a-half-year-old girl in Delhi last week.

“Rape cases have increased due to misuse of mobile phones by the younger generation. They watch dirty films on the mobile phones,” he claimed, adding, “these films show objectionable things.”

His remark drew sharp criticism with former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah tweeting, “Of course because rape & depravity didn’t exist before the arrival of smart phones!!!!”

Khan also alleged that the Narendra Modi-led government was in no mood to tolerate dissenting voices.

He cited Union Minister VK Singh’s “dog” remarks while referring to burning alive of two Dalit kids in Faridabad on Monday to attack the government.

PTI

1 civilian killed after Pakistan Rangers violate ceasefire along International Border in Jammu

The ceasefire violations, which had become a routine, had stopped after the Director General (DG)-level talks between BSF and Pakistan Rangers on September 12.

After over a month-long lull, Pakistani troops on Friday violated the ceasefire along the International Border in Jammu region, killing one civilian and injuring two others.”At about 1705 hours, Pakistan Rangers started unprovoked firing, targeting BSF Naka mound and civil Labourer in the Samba sector, who were carrying out construction work of culvert well inside the Indian territory,” a BSF spokesman said.The BSF gave a befitting reply to the Pakistani firing, he said, adding the exchange of fire stopped at 1730 hours. As per initial reports, three civilians working on the construction of the culvert received bullet injuries, the BSF spokesman said. Police said one of the injured died on way to the hospital where the other injured were undergoing treatment.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”One of the injured has succumbed to his injuries on way to the hospital. The other injured are undergoing treatment at district hospital Samba. We are yet to ascertain the identity of the deceased,” SSP Samba Joginder Singh told PTI.Today’s ceasefire violation from the Pakistani side came after a lull of more than a month. The ceasefire violations, which had become a routine, had stopped after the Director General (DG)-level talks between BSF and Pakistan Rangers on September 12.

30 flights to and fro Jammu cancelled; 2,500 passengers affected

Sources said some 30 flights could neither land at nor depart from the Jammu airport due to a directive from the IAF that asked airlines to operate with significantly less overall load.
Representational Image
dna Research & Archives
As many as 2,500 passengers were affected on Friday as 30 flights were cancelled to and fro Jammu because of restrictions imposed by the Indian Air Force at the airport there for some technical reasons. The curbs on operations were lifted later in the day following intervention by civil aviation authorities.Sources said some 30 flights could neither land at nor depart from the Jammu airport due to a directive from the IAF that asked airlines to operate with significantly less overall load.A NOTAM (Notice to Airmen), dated October 7, was issued on the grounds that the airport runway’s load bearing capacity was low. Even though the restriction was to be in place from October 14 to January 14, aviation regulator DGCA was allegedly informed about it only this week and the same was communicated to the airlines, the sources said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”With the sudden intimation (from the IAF), the airlines were unprepared and this led to cancellation of some 30 flights, affecting as many as 2,500 passengers,” they added.Air India, Jet Airways, IndiGo, GoAir and SpiceJet together operate at least 32 flights daily to and from Jammu airport. According to sources, the matter was taken up by the Civil Aviation Ministry with the Defence Ministry and after discussions, IAF decided to cancel the NOTAM in the evening with immediate effect.The NOTAM — a communication that informs pilots about potential risks to flight safety — was issued by IAF after a study flagged off concerns about Jammu airport runway’s load bearing capacity. The study is believed to have suggested that only aircraft with significantly less load than normal can operate from the runway.While the NOTAM has been cancelled now, DGCA would be carrying out regular inspections to check the safety aspects of Jammu airport runway, sources said. On its part, IAF would be carrying out re-carpeting work of the Jammu airport runway in a phased manner, they added.During the day, only Air India managed to operate flights to and from Jammu airport as it deployed an aircraft equipped for flying with relatively less weight.

Pakistani daily dubs Shiv Sena a monster, says India must worry about its image

After Shiv Sena activists disrupted a meeting between chiefs of Indian and Pakistan cricket boards, the Pakistan media has labelled the Hindu extremist party party as a ‘monster.’

The News International, in an editorial piece on Tuesday, said the threat posed by “the hard-line right-wing Shiv Sena group seems to be growing into a monster that may prove very hard to control”.

“The main thrust of the attack appears to be directed against anyone opposed to their extremist Hindu ideology; Pakistan and Pakistanis seem to be the main targets,” the editorial added.

In the latest incident, award-winning umpire Aleem Dar has been threatened by the Shiv Sena and withdrawn from officiating in the ongoing India-South Africa series by the ICC.

Representative image. AFPRepresentative image. AFP

Representative image. AFP

The threats came soon after the Shiv Sena barged into the office of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) president Shashank Manohar in Mumbai to warn him against meeting visiting Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Shaharyar Khan. The meeting with Mahohar in Mumbai was cancelled and a meeting with IPL chairman Rajeev Shukla took place in New Delhi instead.

Shiv Sena is opposed to any engagement with Pakistan as it blames the country for inciting militant attacks in India. The party has been in news for all the wrong reasons. On 13 October, Shiv Sena activists smeared Sudheendra Kulkarni’s face with black ink because Kulkarni, chairman of Observer Research Foundation Mumbai, had organised the book launch of former Pakistani minister Khurshid Mahmud Kasuri in Mumbai.

The News International editorial pointed out that Jammu and Kashmir legislator Engineer Rashid had ‘again’ been attacked over his position on the beef ban in the state. Previously, on 7 October, he had been beaten up by BJP members on the floor of the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly the day after he reportedly hosted a beef party.

The editorial said it is obvious “the Shiv Sena terror is getting out of hand”. According to The News International, there have been incidents where Shiv Sena has “raised its ugly threats from time to time.” The fact that Shiv Sena has allied with the BJP to form a government in Maharashtra, the newspaper feels, that could be a reason why the BJP-led government at the Centre has not reacted to the ‘extremist acts.’

The Pakistani daily told the Modi-led government to act for the sake of India’s image as there already is a huge gap ‘as far as relations between Pakistan and India go’. Unfortunately, the piece adds that it is hard to see a resolution, particularly given the acts of intolerance across the country.

With IANS inputs

Protests, shutdown in Kashmir as trucker laid to rest

Srinagar-Jammu National highway remained closed while train services from Baramulla to Anatnag remained suspended as a precautionary measure
An ex-gratia of Rs5 lakh and government jobs for Zahid’s kin
Four more persons have been booked under stringent Public Safety Act for criminal assault on a Kashmir-bound truck

Security personnel patrol deserted street during a curfew imposed to maintain law and order in Udhampur, Srinagar, on Monday

PTI
Shock, anger and outrage has gripped the Kashmir valley over the death of a trucker Zahid Ahmad Bhat even as the rains came to the rescue of beleaguered Mufti Mohammad Sayeed led PDP-BJP government in Jammu and Kashmir.Noted Kashmiri poet Dr Margoob Banhali who joined the chorus of protesters and returned his Sahtiya Akademi award against the killing of Zahid by a mob near Udhampur on the Srinagar-Jammu national highway on the intervening night of October 9 and 10.Zahid, who succumbed to burn injuries in Delhi’s Safdar Jang hospital on Sunday, was buried on Monday morning. Thousands of people participated in his funeral procession amid heavy rains at his native village of Batengo in Anantnag district of south Kashmir.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Chanting ‘pro-azadi’ slogans people marched through the village with Zahid’s casket till it reached his ancestral graveyard where his body was laid to rest according to Islamic traditions.Massive protests rocked Batengo after Zahid’s burial with people pelting stones on the security forces. Forces fired tear smoke shells and used baton charge to disperse the violent mob. The ding-dong battle continued for hours as protesters were in no mood to retreat despite inclement weather.Elsewhere, heavy rains and sudden drop in the temperature helped Mufti government to heave a sigh of relief as the protests remained mostly localised. Police sources said there were protests in different parts of the Kashmir but they did not spiral out of control given the inclement weather.”Situation remained by and large under control,” Waheed-ur-Rehman Para, political analyst to the chief minister Mufti Mohommad Sayeed, told dna.Kashmir and Chenab Valley observed a complete shutdown. Shops, business establishments and schools remained shut while traffic was off the roads. The call for strike was given by different separatist groups and trade organisations.Authorities had imposed curfew like restrictions in sensitive old city of Srinagar to prevent any law and order breakdown. Security forces had erected barricades and rolled out concertina wire on exit and entry points of Srinagar and Anantnag to prevent any protest march.Srinagar-Jammu National highway remained closed while train services from Baramulla to Anatnag remained suspended as a precautionary measure.Facing public anger, the state cabinet passed a resolution moved by chief minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed expressing deep shock and grief over the tragic death of Zahid.Expressing solidarity with the bereaved family, the Cabinet observed a two-minute silence in memory of the departed soul. “The Cabinet also approved ex-gratia of Rs5 lakh and Rs3 lakh and government jobs in favour of the next of kin of Zahid and Showkat Ahmad Dar, who is undergoing treatment in the Safdarjung Hospital, in New Delhi,” said an official spokesman.Four more persons have been booked under stringent Public Safety Act (PSA) for criminal assault on a Kashmir bound truck. Five persons were earlier booked under PSA in the case. With this, all the nine persons involved in planning and execution of the fatal attack have been booked under PSA.”All the nine accused have been booked for murder under Section 302 RPC as well. District magistrate Udhampur Shahid Iqbal Choudhary after examining the dossier, facts and material produced on record regarding the instant case and criminal history of the accused issued warrants for detention of the persons involved in the attack under PSA,” said the spokesman. Four more bookedFour more persons have been booked under stringent Public Safety Act (PSA) for criminal assault on a Kashmir bound truck. Five persons were earlier booked under PSA in the case. With this, all the nine persons involved in planning and execution of the fatal attack have been booked under PSA.”All the nine accused have been booked for murder under Section 302 RPC as well. District magistrate Udhampur Shahid Iqbal Choudhary after examining the dossier, facts and material produced on record regarding the instant case and criminal history of the accused issued warrants for detention of the persons involved in the attack under PSA,” said the spokesman.

Two arrested for ink attack on Jammu & Kashmir MLA Abdul Rashid

Some TV journalists as well as policemen received colours on their faces as well as clothes while trying to save the MLA from the mob.

Jammu and Kashmir MLA Abdul Rashid Sheikhs face was blackened by few activists, allegedly belonging to a right-wing organisation, at Press Club in New Delhi on Monday.

PTI
Two persons of a right wing Hindu outfit were arrested on Monday for smearing Jammu and Kashmir MLA Sheikh Abdul Rashid’s face with paint, ink and mobil oil protesting against his hosting a beef party in Srinagar earlier this month.Rashid had called the presser at Press Club to brief media on the attack on two truck drivers by a mob at Udhampur in Jammu region, on October 9. One of the victims – 19-year-old Zahid – died at Safdarjung Hospital in New Delhi on Sunday morning.As he finished the press conference, Rashid, who is also known as ‘Engineer Rashid’, was held at the gate of the Press Club by some TV journalists for one-to-one interviews when some activists shouting slogans “gow mata ka apman, nahi sahega Hindustan (India will not tolerate any disrespect to cow)” pounced on him and painted him with black colour, mobil oil and blue ink. Some TV journalists as well as policemen received colours on their faces as well as clothes while trying to save the MLA from the mob.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Deepak Sharma (30) and Devendra Upadhyay (33) were detained immediately from the spot, by the police and whisked away to Parliament Street Police station. They were later booked under sections 341 and 355 of IPC and arrested, DCP, New Delhi, Jatin Narwal said, adding that the two were members of Hindu Sena. Rashid had to take refuge inside the Press Club till additional forces came in and was later taken out by police personnel.”They are mentally sick. I want the whole world to see this how these people are trying to muzzle the voice of Kashmiris,” Rashid, who was earlier beaten by BJP MLAs in the state Assembly for hosting the beef party, said after the attack.The incident drew strong condemnation from the state.

Climate of intolerance and hate is matter of deep concern: Ghulam Nabi Azad

The Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha said that growing acts of intolerance and “hate-mongering” will weaken the social fabric and enfeeble the bonds of amity and brotherhood in the society.
File Photo
PTI
Terming as “despicable act” the ink attack on a Jammu & Kashmir MLA and ransacking of BCCI’s Mumbai office, senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad on Monday said the climate of intolerance and hate in the country is a matter of deep concern.The Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha said that growing acts of intolerance and “hate-mongering” will weaken the social fabric and enfeeble the bonds of amity and brotherhood in the society.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”Either there will be climate of intolerance and hate or one marked by pluralism and composite culture, there can be no in between,” he said, adding that leadership of the BJP has to make a choice between the two to save this country from turning into another Pakistan.Few activists allegedly belonging to a right-wing organisation blackened the face of Sheikh Abdul Rashid, an independent MLA from the state, here protesting against his hosting a beef party in Srinagar earlier this month. Rashid was attacked after his press conference.”It is a despicable act on the part of such elements who are not comfortable with the language and spirit of democratic polity and pluralistic ethos”, said Azad, adding “climate of intolerance and hate in the country is a matter of deep concern for all the enlightened citizens who wish India to attain its rightful place in the comity of nations”.Also read- Abdul Rashid ink attack: BJP defends attack while Jammu & Kashmir CM Sayeed condemns itAzad said though he does not subscribe to many of the views of Rashid, however, to indulge in violence and hooliganism is not a way to oppose him.”Law of the land is supreme and nobody can be allowed to subvert the rule of law and democratic ethos of the country,” he said.He condemned he ink attack on Rashid and vandalism of the office of Board of Cricket Control of India (BCCI) in Mumbai “carried out by lumpen elements and hate-mongers”.”Our country will soon turn into an anarchical society if the current trend is not reversed,” Azad said, adding that a small spark can take us back by decades, and our stature and esteem will be lowered at the international level.He said that the entire leadership of freedom movement under Mahatma Gandhi has combated the menace of communalism with great commitment and created a unique socio-political architecture of modern India.”We cannot squander the sacrifices made by our great leaders to preserve the multi-religious, multi-cultural and multi-lingual identity of our country,” he said.

Abdul Rashid ink attack: BJP defends attack while Jammu & Kashmir CM Sayeed condemns it

The ink attack took place when Abdul Rashid had called a press conference in the national capital.

File Photo Courtesy: www.rajyasabha.tv

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Monday defended the ink attack on Jammu and Kashmir MLA Abdul Rashid by the Vishnu Gupta-led Hindu Sena at the Press Club of India in New Delhi, saying that he was a victim of his own doing.”India is a democratic country where anyone can do anything. If Abdul Rashid can a give beef party, then he should also realise that anything can happen with him also,? BJP MLA Gagan Bhagat told ANI.”The incident is not right. However, Abdul Rashid is a victim of his own doing,” he added.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Meanwhile, Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed on Monday condemned the ink attack, saying the “spate in unpleasant incidents” is “most disturbing”.In a statement, Sayeed said, “in a vibrant democracy like India, we need to have courage to respect dissent and provide space to different points of view.” He added tha, “the spate in unpleasant incidents such as this is most disturbing.”Former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah also condemned the attack on Rashid and said the “climate of intolerance and violence is very worrying”.The ink attack took place when Abdul Rashid had called a press conference in the national capital. The Hindu Sena has claimed responsibility for the attack alleging that Rashid has insulted cow, which is considered sacred to Hindus.Rashid was recently beaten up by BJP MLAs inside the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly for allegedly hosting a beef party at the MLA hotel.

J&K MLA Abdul Rashid cries foul, links ink attack with ‘talibanisation’

The independent MLA from Langate said that every conscience bearing citizen would condemn this act.

File Photo Courtesy: www.rajyasabha.tv

Jammu and Kashmir legislator Abdul Rashid on Monday dubbed the ink attack on him as ‘undemocratic’ and said this showed the ugly face of the radicals in India. Rashid, who was attacked with ink outside the Press Club of India, said the world should now see how India treats Kashmiris.”We want to tell India that see the ugly face of these radical forces. We will not succumb. We will fight till the end. This is Modi’s India and not Gandhi’s India,” said Rashid.”This is totally undemocratic. They say that Pakistan has ‘talibanisation’ but they should see what is happening in India,” he added.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Also read: Ink, mobil oil thrown at J&K independent MLA Abdul Rashid for hosting beef party, 2 detainedThe independent MLA from Langate further said that every conscience bearing citizen would condemn this act.”All we want to tell the people of India that see where you are headed to. These people are mentally ill. Kashmir has already lost 80,000 people. Throwing ink at Engineer Rashid will solve no purpose,” he added.Vishnu Gupta-led Hindu Sena has claimed responsibility for the attack on Rashid outside the Press Club of India. The protestors alleged that Rashid has insulted cow, considered to be mother. The incident took place when the Jammu and Kashmir MLA had called a press conference.Rashid was recently beaten up by the BJP MLAs inside the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly for allegedly hosting a beef party. This comes close to the incident of black ink being thrown at former BJP aide Sudheendra Kulkarni in Mumbai before a book launch of former Pakistani minister.

J&K: Udhampur trucker set ablaze over ‘cow killing’ dies; third victim in three weeks

Deceased body flown to Kashmir on Sunday evening for last rites.

Anantnag: Family members of 24-years-old Zahid crying after the Kashmiri truck conductor who was injured in petrol bomb attack in Udhampur district dies in Delhis Safdarjung Hospital, at his residence in Batango in Anantnag District of South Kashmir on Sunday.

PTI
Strife-torn Kashmir is on the edge after a trucker, who was set ablaze by a mob over the rumours of cow killing in Udhampur, succumbed to injuries in Delhi’s Safdarjung Hospital on Sunday.Zahid Ahmad Bhat had received 70 per cent burns after a petrol bomb was hurled on the Kashmir-bound truck near Shiv Nagar on the Srinagar-Jammu highway on the intervening night of October 9 and 10. Bhat’s associate Showkat Ahmad Dar, who had received 40 per cent burns, is currently under treatment in the Safdarjung Hospital.The attack had come just days after carcasses of the cows were found in Udhampur district. The district administration and the cow owner later ruled out any foul play and concluded that the bovines had died a natural death.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Zahid’s death is the third reported murder in the last three weeks over beef-related rumours, after Dadri and Saharanpur incidents.Violent protests rocked several areas of south Kashmir after the death of Zahid reached his ancestral village Batingo in Anantnag district. Hundreds of youth took to streets and blocked the Srinagar-Jammu national highway.Protestors also hurled stones on the security forces prompting them to lob smoke shells and resort to lathi-charge.“Another needless death in the name of beef ban for which the BJP and its affiliates including allies are directly responsible. The honourable PM passed the buck on to Akhilesh Yadav…for Dadri. Who will he blame for Zahid death now?” tweeted Omar Abdullah, former J&K chief minister.“The so-called rulers are directly responsible for this murder. In their lust for power they have handed over J&K to fanatics,” said Mohommad Yasin Malik, chairman of Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF).

Udhampur attack: Two more arrested, taking total to nine

The attack has been seen by many as an after-effect of a beef party hosted by Independent legislator Engineer Rashid in Srinagar.

Kashmiri youths pelting stones on police and paramilitary forces protesting against death of a trucker who was injured when a mob set his vehicle afire in Udhampur, in Anantnag district of South Kashmir on Sunday.

PTI
Two more accused in connection with the Udhampur national highway attack on October 9 has been arrested, taking the total number arrests to nine.Udhampur District Magistrate Shahid Iqbal Chaudhary said earlier that five people involved in the attack, in which two persons sustained critical burn injuries, were booked under the Public Safety Act. Deputy Chief Minister Nirmal Singh on Sunday appealed to the people of the state to maintain peace and communal harmony.”A petrol bomb was hurled at him a week ago, and he is no more now. My sympathies are with his family. We condemn the incident. I appeal to the people to maintain peace and communal harmony. In future, we will ensure that no such incidents occur,” Singh told the media.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The attack has been seen by many as an after-effect of a beef party hosted by Independent legislator Engineer Rashid in Srinagar. Meanwhile, the locals staged a protest over the death of Bhat, who suffered burn injuries along with the driver, and was shifted Delhi’s Safdarjung Hospital, where he succumbed to his injuries on Sunday. The incident led to an uproar in the Jammu and Kashmir assembly on Saturday, with the opposition seeking a reply from the ruling BJP-PDP government.

Udhampur trucker death: Jammu and Kashmir CM Mufti Mohammad blames politics of hate

Expressing deep shock and grief, he regretted that “one more precious life has been lost to the politics of hate and intolerance that is posing a grave challenge to the state and country s plurality.

He had assured the family members that stringent punishment will be given to those found guilty

Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed on Sunday expressed deep shock over the death of a truck conductor who was injured in an attack in Udhampur days ago and blamed the “politics of hate and intolerance”, saying it is posing a “grave challenge” to the nation. He asserted that under no circumstances shall those guilty of this “barbaric crime” be allowed to go unpunished. “I have no words to condemn the dastardly act which consumed the life of a poor and innocent young boy for no fault of his,” Sayeed said in his condolence message after Zahid succumbed to injuries sustained in the petrol bomb attack nine days ago.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Expressing deep shock and grief, he regretted that “one more precious life has been lost to the politics of hate and intolerance that is posing a grave challenge to the state and country s plurality.” The Chief Minister said though the loss of life of Zahid in the tragic incident cannot be compensated, he directed the official machinery to extend all possible help to the bereaved family in its hour of grief. Zahid was one of the two persons injured in the attack.Sayeed, earlier on October 14, had visited the Safadrjung Hospital in New Delhi to inquire about the health of the injured. He had assured the family members that stringent punishment will be given to those found guilty of this heinous crime and that the two families shall be provided government jobs for their sustenance, an official spokesman said.

Kashmir truck attack victim, targetted over beef, dies, violence erupts in Kashmir

Srinagar: Violence erupted in parts of the Kashmir Valley on Sunday after a 16-year-old injured in a bomb attack on a truck on 9 October died in Delhi, police and witnesses said.

Zahid Rasool Bhat, who was being treated for burn injuries in Delhi’s Safdarjung Hospital, died on Sunday, a senior police officer told IANS in Srinagar.

Representational image. Image courtesy: APRepresentational image. Image courtesy: AP

Representational image. Image courtesy: AP

Bhat and another Kashmiri from Anantnag district, Showkat Ahmad Dar, 35, sustained serious injuries when their parked truck was attacked by a mob with a petrol bomb at Udhampur town on the Jammu-Srinagar highway.

The attack, allegedly by a Hindu mob, took place in the aftermath of a beef party hosted by independent legislator Engineer Rashid in Srinagar.

As news of the death in Delhi spread, mobs took to the streets in the southern district of Anantnag in the Kashmir Valley and blocked the Jammu-Srinagar highway by burning tyres.

The highway is the only road link between the Kashmir Valley and the rest of India.

They also shouted slogans against the government, and pelted stones at security personnel who tried to disperse them, witnesses said.

Hurriyat chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq said the government was to blame for Bhat’s death as it failed to provide security to the truckers.

The separatists called for a shutdown in the Kashmir Valley on Monday.

Both the victims of the attack were flown to Safdarjung Hospital which specializes in treating burn injuries.

Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Muhammad Sayeed had visited them at the hospital three days back.

IANS

16-year-old Kashmir truck attack victim dies, violence erupts

Srinagar: Violence erupted in parts of the Kashmir Valley on Sunday after a 16-year-old injured in a bomb attack on a truck on 9 October died in Delhi, police and witnesses said.

Zahid Rasool Bhat, who was being treated for burn injuries in Delhi’s Safdarjung Hospital, died on Sunday, a senior police officer told IANS in Srinagar.

Representational image. Image courtesy: APRepresentational image. Image courtesy: AP

Representational image. Image courtesy: AP

Bhat and another Kashmiri from Anantnag district, Showkat Ahmad Dar, 35, sustained serious injuries when their parked truck was attacked by a mob with a petrol bomb at Udhampur town on the Jammu-Srinagar highway.

The attack, allegedly by a Hindu mob, took place in the aftermath of a beef party hosted by independent legislator Engineer Rashid in Srinagar.

As news of the death in Delhi spread, mobs took to the streets in the southern district of Anantnag in the Kashmir Valley and blocked the Jammu-Srinagar highway by burning tyres.

The highway is the only road link between the Kashmir Valley and the rest of India.

They also shouted slogans against the government, and pelted stones at security personnel who tried to disperse them, witnesses said.

Hurriyat chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq said the government was to blame for Bhat’s death as it failed to provide security to the truckers.

The separatists called for a shutdown in the Kashmir Valley on Monday.

Both the victims of the attack were flown to Safdarjung Hospital which specializes in treating burn injuries.

Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Muhammad Sayeed had visited them at the hospital three days back.

IANS

46 passengers injured in separate road mishaps in J&K

As many as 46 passengers were injured in separate road accidents in Udhampur, Jammu and Reasi districts of Jammu and Kashmir.

As many as 46 passengers were injured in separate road accidents in Udhampur, Jammu and Reasi districts of Jammu and Kashmir.33 persons were injured, with some of them serious, when a passenger bus collided with a truck on a national highway at Bali Nallah in Udhampur district yesterday, police said here today.The bus was on its way from Doda to Jammu when it collided with the truck, they said, adding police personnel were rushed to the spot and the injured were shifted to district hospital at Udhampur.Meanwhile, in another accident, 8 persons were injured when their mini bus skidded-off the road and turned turtle in Barnai area of Jammu yesterday, they said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The mini bus was on its way to Mishriwala from Jammu when the incident took place, they said, adding the injured were shifted to Government Medical College (GMC) hospital for treatment.In Reasi district, five persons were injured in two separate road accidents at Barakh and Nomain area of the district, they said.The injured passengers have been shifted to hospital, police said.Police has registered cases and initiated investigations, they said.

J&K CM Mufti Mohammad Sayeed condemns lynching of alleged cow smuggler in Himachal Pradesh

Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed today condemned the lynching of an alleged cow smuggler from Saharanpur by a mob in Himachal Pradesh.

Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed today condemned the lynching of an alleged cow smuggler from Saharanpur by a mob in Himachal Pradesh.Sayeed expressed grave concern over incidents of mob lynching saying people cannot be allowed to take law into their own hands.”The killing of a youth by a mob in Himachal Pradesh is very unfortunate. We can’t allow Kangaroo courts to pronounce judgement and lynch people the way they did in Dadri and now in Himachal,” the Chief Minister said in a statement here.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Sayeed asked the government concerned to enforce rule of law and bring those responsible for such criminal acts to justice.He said incidents like Dadri and the ink-attack on ORF Chairman Sudheendra Kulkarni in Mumbai have made people “very insecure” which does not augur well for a country that has a proud past of cultural and religious inclusiveness.

Burkha-clad militant masquerading as woman arrested in south Kashmir

Police exercised maximum restraint and did not retaliate as the area was bustling with activities. “Troops however chased the militants and were able to arrest one of their accomplice who was dressed like a woman,” said the spokesman.

A burkha-clad militant disguising as woman and armed with meat cleaver was arrested when the security forces intercepted a cab with suspected militants on board at the Bus Stand Pulwama in south Kashmir on Friday. Two civilians including a woman pedestrian were injured when the militants on board the cab opened fire to escape. However the cops and CRPF soldiers managed to overpower the burkha -lad militant before he could give slip along with his associates.Identified as Tariq Ahmad, he was wearing a burkha and carrying a sharp meat cleaver underneath with an intention to carry out sensational attack in the Pulwama town.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Police said acting on specific tip off about the presence of militants, special operation group and troops of 182-battalion CRPF raided the bus stand Pulwama. “They saw some suspicious looking people along with a burqa clad women in a Tata Sumo. When the troops directed them to alight, they started indiscriminate firing and ran away from the spot,” said a police spokesman at Pulwama.Police exercised maximum restraint and did not retaliate as the area was bustling with activities. “Troops however chased the militants and were able to arrest one of their accomplice who was dressed like a woman,” said the spokesman.Meanwhile Indian Army busted a militant hideout and recovered a huge cache of arms and ammunition from the mountainous Chapryian – Saujiyan forest in the Poonch district of Jammu division.Acting on specific information the joint team of Gorkhas of 93 infantary brigade and local police launched a swift and surgical search operation and recovered AK-47 rifle, one 12 bore rifle, one Chinese, two Pakistan origin and one country made pistol, two Under Barrel Grenade launchers (UBGLs), two RPG boosters, one RCIED and five IEDs along with timers.Besides, two Chinese grenades alongwith 47 rounds of AK riffe, 370 Pika rounds, six pistol rounds, two RPG rounds, two UBGL rounds, 10 AK–47 magazines, five pistol magazines, approximately 20 Kg explosives, 500 grams plastic explosive, cordtex safety fuse, firing cable, mobile phone, Battery, Binocular, Insulation tape and wireless system were also recovered from the spot.”Recovery of such war like stores will prove detrimental to the revival of terrorism in the area and further strengthen the existing security grid. The recovery has indeed thwarted the evil designs of the militants,” said SN Acharya, officiating defence spokesman at Jammu.

Jammu and Kashmir beef ban: Ball in govt’s court as HC sets aside earlier order

The state government approached the Supreme Court against the two orders of the High Court.

SC has asked the court to resolve the beef ban issue as division benches — one in Srinagar and another in Jammu — had differed over the matter.

A full bench of Jammu and Kashmir High Court today set aside an earlier order of the court directing strict enforcement of a legal bar on bovine slaughter and beef sale, saying it was for the state government and the legislature to consider the issue. The bench comprising Justices Muzaffar Hussain Attar, Ali Muhammad Magrey and Tashi Rabstan, which virtually restored status quo ante, had been asked by the Supreme Court on October 5 to resolve the beef ban issue as division benches of the HC — one in Srinagar and another in Jammu — had differed over the matter, after which the state government had moved the apex court. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The court also disposed of the petition, challenging the September 9 order of the Jammu bench asking the state police to “strictly enforce” the existing laws (sections 298 A to D of the J&K Ranbir Penal Code) regulating ban on bovine slaughter and beef sale in the state. A detailed order is likely to be issued later in the day. The bench was constituted after the Supreme Court kept in abeyance for two months the order of a division bench of the state High Court passed on September 9, directing the police authorities to enforce the more than century-old beef ban in the state. However, a week later, another division bench of the court here, while admitting a writ petition challenging the constitutional validity of the penal sections regulating ban on bovine slaughter and beef sale, had issued notices to the state government directing it to file a response within one week.The state government approached the Supreme Court against the two orders of the High Court.

Two militants killed in Doda

Two miltants killed at Gadi Nallah in an encounter by army and J&K police early morning on Thursday.

Jawans of Indian Army and J&K police who were involved in this joint operation.

Image courtesy: ANI’s Twitter handle
Two militants were killed in an encounter at Gadi Nallah in Doda District of Jammu and Kashmir.The militants, who had previously surrendered before the Kathua Police, were killed in an operation jointly carried out by the army and the state police. This encounter took place on Thursday morning.

Infiltrators kill Indian army trooper on the Line of Control

SN Acharya, officiating defence spokesman at Jammu, said an infiltration bid was foiled by vigilant troops after a suspicious movement was observed along the Line of Control.

A day after Indian Army claimed that 300 ultras are waiting on the launch pads to sneak into the Kashmir valley, militants killed an army soldier when alert troops foiled an infiltration bid on the Line of Control (LoC) in the Krishna Ghati sector of Poonch district in Jammu division.SN Acharya, officiating defence spokesman at Jammu, said an infiltration bid was foiled by vigilant troops after a suspicious movement was observed along the Line of Control.”The group of unidentified terrorists was spotted by alert troops along the Line of Control at 1500 hours on October 14 in Krishna Ghati Sector and contact was established. On being challenged by own troops, the terrorists responded with heavy fire,” he said .<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Acharya noted that in the ensuing fire fight Lance Naik Govind Singh suffered gun shot wounds and was shifted to hospital where he succumbed. “He attained martyrdom after receiving a gun shot wound”, he said. Entire area has been cordoned off and reinforcements were rushed in to track down the militants responsible for the incident. “The area has been cordoned off. The operations were in progress till the last reports came in”, the officiating defence spokesman added. The infiltration bid was foiled a day after general officer commanding of 15 Corps, Lieutenant General Satish Dua said 300 infiltrators are waiting on launch pads, but they are unable to sneak into the valley due to strong counter infiltration grid.

Poonch: Army jawan killed while trying to foil infiltration bid along LoC

The area has been cordoned off and operation was going on when the last reports came in.
Representational Image
dna Research & Archives
A jawan was killed on Wednesday in a gunbattle with militants as the army foiled an infiltration bid along the Line of Control (LoC) in Poonch district of Jammu and Kashmir. Lance Naik Govind Singh was injured in the firing and died while being rushed to hospital.According to Defence spokesman S N Acharya, army personnel observed a suspicious movement (of militants) along the LoC in Krishnagati sector at around 3 PM and challenged them, after which the militants opened fire.”A contact was established with terrorists and they opened fire. Lance Naik Govind Singh was critically injured due to gunshot and later died enroute to hospital,” Acharya said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The area has been cordoned off and operation was going on when the last reports came in, Acharya said.

Beef ban: Supreme Court refuses to hear plea for hearing in Jammu bench

As the bench expressed its view, the petitioner Parimoksh Seth sought permission to withdraw his fresh plea and sought a liberty to move the apex court again in case he felt aggrieved by any subsequent order of high court.

The Supreme Court on Wednesday refused to entertain a plea seeking a direction that a three-judge bench should hear the petitions on enforcement of a prohibition on slaughter of cow and beef sale in the state in Jammu instead of Srinagar bench of Jammu and Kashmir High Court.”Yesterday night, I had a talk with the learned Chief Justice and he is not expecting any problem whatsoever,” a bench comprising Chief Justice H L Dattu and Justice Arun Mishra said. The observation of the bench came when the counsel for the petitioner, who had filed the PIL before the Jammu bench of the high court, said that there could be a law and order problem if matters are heard and decided at Srinagar bench.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>As the bench expressed its view, the petitioner Parimoksh Seth sought permission to withdraw his fresh plea and sought a liberty to move the apex court again in case he felt aggrieved by any subsequent order of high court. The plea was allowed. Earlier, the apex court had suspended for two months a controversial court order for enforcing a legal bar on the sale of beef in Jammu and Kashmir while asking the Chief Justice of J-K High Court to set up a three-judge bench to decide on two conflicting orders on the issue.The apex court had kept in abeyance the September 8 order of the Jammu bench of the High Court which had ordered enforcement of bar on sale of beef in the state in pursuance of Ranbir Penal Code (RPC) provisions.The bench had also referred to the order passed by another division bench of high court at Srinagar which issued a notice on a PIL demanding scrapping of the RPC provision.The apex court had said, “Since there are conflicting expressions given by two division benches of the high court, we request the learned Chief Justice to constitute a bench of three learned judges to take a decision on writ petitions.” The apex court had further said the HC Chief Justice willbe at liberty to decide the place where the larger bench will hear and decide together the two writ petitions. The Supreme Court’s decision had come on the plea of the state government which had said that the inconsistent views of the two benches of the high court were being “misused” to disturb peace and communal harmony in the state.While the Jammu bench of the High Court had ordered enforcement of the bar on the sale of beef in the state under the RPC, the Srinagar bench agreed to hear a separate plea seeking scrapping of the provision that bars slaughter of bovine animals.In its order, the Jammu bench had said, “The Director General of Police is directed to ensure that appropriate directions are issued to all the SSPs/SPs, SHOs of various police districts so that there is no sale of beef anywhere in the State of J&K and strict action is taken in accordance with the law against those who indulge in it.” On the other hand, the Srinagar bench, on September 16, issued notice on a plea that had sought striking down of the RPC provision banning slaughter of bovine animals.The Srinagar bench had also said that the pendency of the plea before it will not operate “as a bar” if the state wants to do away with the provision

Apex court dismisses plea seeking HC hearing of J&K beef ban case in Jammu

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Wednesday dismissed a petition seeking that the hearing on the beef ban in Jammu and Kashmir be heard by a three-judge bench of the high court at Jammu.

Image courtesy: AFPImage courtesy: AFP

Image courtesy: AFP

An apex court bench of Chief Justice H.L. Dattu and Justice Arun Mishra dismissed the plea, which contended that there was an apprehension of a law and order situation if the hearing would be held in Srinagar.

Chief Justice Dattu while rejecting the plea, said that he had spoken to the Jammu and Kashmir High Court Chief Justice N. Paul Vasanta Kumar on Tuesday night and he had said that there was no apprehension of a law and order problem if the hearing took place in Srinagar

The petitioner, Parimoksh Seth, had sought the hearing be either held at Jammu or outside the state.

In view of the conflicting orders on the beef ban passed by the Jammu and Srinagar benches of the high court, the Supreme Court had on October 7 asked its chief justice to constitute a three judges bench to decide the issue.

IANS

Trucker wanted in Udhampur terror attack case arrested

National Investigation Agency had put Rs2 lakh bounty on the head of Bhat who was evading arrest since the attack took place on August 5. Two BSF jawans were killed and 11 others injured when Usman and Momin attacked their bus at Samroli on the Jammu-Srinagar highway in Udhampur district.

Two months after Udhampur terror attack, Jammu and Kashmir police achieved a major success on Tuesday when they arrested the truck owner-cum-conductor who ferried two Pakistani militants to Samroli on the Jammu-Srinagar highway to launch a fidayeen attack on the security forces on August 5.Twenty-eight-year-old Sabzar Ahmad Bhat alias Sabha of Nai Basti-Qaimoh in Kulgam district was arrested on specific tip off about his presence in the south Kashmir area. Bhat had ferried Pakistani Lashkar-e-Taiba ultras Mohammad Naveed alias Usman and Noman alias Momin to Udhampur in his truck before launching the attack on August 5.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>National Investigation Agency had put Rs2 lakh bounty on the head of Bhat who was evading arrest since the attack took place on August 5. Two BSF jawans were killed and 11 others injured when Usman and Momin attacked their bus at Samroli on the Jammu-Srinagar highway in Udhampur district.Momin was later gunned down in retaliatory action while Usman took some civilians hostage in a bid to flee from the spot. However he was overpowered by two hostages and handed over to the security forces.Three other accused including Lashkar-e-Taiba chief Abu Qasim alias Abdul Rehman are still on the run. NIA has announced a bounty of Rs10 lakh on Abu Qasim and Rs5 lakh each on Abu Okasha and Mohommad Bhai, two associates of Usman.Qasim, a resident of Bhawalpur, Pakistan and aged between 27 and 28 years, is one of the most wanted militant commander in Jammu and Kashmir. Qasim is said to be the mastermind of the Udhampur terror attack case.NIA had also released the posters with the sketch and photographs of Abu Okasha and Zargam alias Mohammad Bhai of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan, who have also been named in the Udhampur terror attack.The duo was part of the four member group that had infiltrated into Jammu and Kashmir in the month of Ramzan. “Abu Okasha, aged between 18 and 19 years, is a resident of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in Pakistan. Mohommad Bhai is said to be aged between 38 to 40 years and is five feet three inch tall with bald head,” reads the posters.NIA has already arrested the trucker Showkat Ahmad who ferried the militants to south Kashmir after they infiltrated from PoK. The agency has also intensified their hunt to nab the mysterious businessman who has paid Rs5 lakh to Lashkar commander Abu Dujana, the second in command of the outfit responsible for finances and logistics.

Article 370 of constitution is permanent, rules Jammu and Kashmir High Court

The Court also said that Article 35A gives “protection” to existing laws in force in the State. “Article 370 though titled as ‘Temporary Provision’ and included in Para XXI titled ‘Temporary, Transitional and Special Provisions’ has assumed place of permanence in the Constitution,” a division bench of justices Hasnain Masoodi and Janak Raj Kotwal ruled in a 60-page judgement.

Jammu and Kashmir High Court has ruled that Article 370, granting special status to the state, has assumed place of permanence in the Constitution and the feature is beyond amendment, repeal or abrogation.The Court also said that Article 35A gives “protection” to existing laws in force in the State. “Article 370 though titled as ‘Temporary Provision’ and included in Para XXI titled ‘Temporary, Transitional and Special Provisions’ has assumed place of permanence in the Constitution,” a division bench of justices Hasnain Masoodi and Janak Raj Kotwal ruled in a 60-page judgement. “It is beyond amendment, repeal or abrogation, in as much as Constituent Assembly of the State before its dissolution did not recommend its Amendment or repeal,” the bench added.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Court also observed that the President under Article 370 (1) is conferred with power to extend any provision of the Constitution to the State with such “exceptions and modifications” as may be deemed fit subject to consultation or concurrence with the State Government. “And such power would include one to amend or alter the provision to be applied, delete or omit part of it, or make additions to the provisions proposed to be applied to the State. Such power would extend even in case of provisions of the Constitution already applied,” the court said.In the circumstances, the court said, additions made to the existing Constitutional provisions through various Constitution (Application to Jammu and Kashmir) orders on their application to the State like Proviso to Clause (2) Article 368, fall within four corners of Article 370(1). The Court said Jammu and Kashmir, while acceding to Dominion of India, retained limited sovereignty and did not merge with Dominion of India, like other Princely States.”State continues to enjoy special status to the extent of limited sovereignty retained by it.”The limited sovereignty or special status stands guaranteed under Article 370 the only provision of the Constitution that applied to the State on its own. The only other Constitutional provision made applicable by Article 370 of the Constitution to the State is Article 1. “No other provision of the Constitution as provided under Article 370 (1), would be applicable to the State except, by Presidential order in consultation with the State in case the provision is akin to subjects delineated in Instrument of Accession and with concurrence of the State, in case it does not fall within ambit of Instrument of Accession,” the court said.The Constitutional framework worked out by Dominion of India and the State reflected in Article 370 has its roots in paras 4 and 7 of Instrument of Accession, the court said. In terms of Article 370, the court said Parliament’s legislative power over the State is primarily confined to three subjects mentioned in the Instruments of accession — Defence, Foreign Affairs and Communications.”The President, however, has power to extend to the State other provisions of the Constitution as also other laws that relate to the subjects specified in the Instrument of Accession. While extending such provisions and laws, the exercise of the power involves consultation with the State Government,” it said.The court said the Constituent Assembly in terms of proviso to Clause (3) Article 370 is conferred with power to recommend to the President that Article 370 be declared to cease to be operative or operate only with the exceptions and modifications mentioned in the recommendation, if any so made.The court pointed out that it is only on such recommendations that the President in terms of Clause (3) Article 370 of the Constitution may, by public notification, declare that Article 370 shall cease to be operative or shall be operative only with such exceptions and modifications and from such date, specified in the notification. “The Constituent Assembly did not make such a recommendation before its dissolution on January 25th, 1957,” it said.”Resultantly, Article 370, notwithstanding its title showing it a ‘temporary provision’ is a permanent provision of the Constitution. It cannot be abrogated, repealed or even amended as mechanism provided under Clause (3) of Article 370 is no more available,” it said adding, “furthermore, Article 368 cannot be pressed into service in this regard, inasmuch as it does not control Article 370 – a self contained provision of the Constitution”.To suit autonomy granted to the State, the court said, provisions like Article 35A and proviso to Article 253 and proviso to Clause 2 Article 368 have been added to the provisions of Constitution, as applied to the State.”The Article 35A gives protection to existing laws in force in the State and to any law enacted after 1954 by the State legislature,” it added

Handwara: Search operation underway to smoke out hiding terrorists, one neutralised

representational image

A terrorist was neutralised by the security forces during the ongoing search operation in Wader Bala forests in Jammu and Kashmir’s Handwara district on Sunday.Two militants are believed to be trapped, as the security forces are closing in on them. A gun battle had broken out on Saturday between militants and security forces after which a cordon and search operation was launched. According to reports, Army’s 21 RR, 6 RR and the police have launched massive searches in several forest areas connecting Hafruda area for last several days since four Army personnel were killed in an attack on October 5 in Tilpathri forest area.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>One militant was killed in Dardpora area of Lolab on October 5.

After beef ban politics, deeply flawed BJP-PDP coalition in Kashmir must work as a whole

By David Devadas

The reduction of the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly chamber to a wrestling arena on Thursday has been roundly condemned — rightly so. But one needs to go beyond shock, anger and despair. For the unsavoury incident (a member thrashed in the House for having hosted a public beef party) highlighted a systemic malaise: The deeply divisive frame that the PDP and the BJP have adopted for their alliance.

Both major coalition partners talk of representing the state’s two main regions, Jammu and Kashmir, respectively. The sub-text is that each represents one of the state’s two main religions. They insist on reading the mandate of 2014 thus. This is dangerous. The experiment in Lebanon showed the fragility of such specifically religion-based political alliances. In this case, it points inexorably towards a communal division of the state. Not only could that cause rivers of blood in the Chenab basin, but it would further blight the future of South Asia.

Screengrab from the video of an MLA being thrashed in the J&K Assembly. IBNLive

Screengrab from the video of an MLA being thrashed in the J&K Assembly. IBNLive

It is true that the BJP won all its seats from the Jammu division and the PDP from the Kashmir Valley. But to reduce that to a communal-regional polarity is to play politics with geography. Think of it this way: The pan-Indian mandates of 1977 and 1980 too were to a large extent geographically polarised, but nobody spoke of dividing south India from north India.

Last winter’s Jammu and Kashmir verdict certainly means that the two regions have divergent aspirations at this point, but that calls for nuanced policies to satisfy both sets of aspirations and for a political initiative to bridge the divide. Most of all, it calls for concerted coalition unity. Competitive communal politics will not only deepen the wedge, it could set off a spiral. For unexpected more-religious-than-you players have a way of gliding out of the woodwork.

The fact is that sociological conflicts based on religion, ethnicity, region, sect or tribe are symptoms of structural – economic and administrative – root causes. Powers must devolve to Panchayati Raj institutions, civil society institutions must be strengthened and corruption controlled so that entrepreneurship, investment, industry and other legitimate economic and social activity may thrive. The current dole economy combines with patronage politics to not only stifle the economy but also to generate sloth, repression, extortion, alienation – and finally, violent responses. Without appropriate curative measures, dividing the state into two, three or even ten portions will only multiply the problem, not solve it.

A coalition government must work cohesively to forge a united future for the state. Failure to do so will pave the way for what leading Pakistanis have described as `completing the incomplete task of Partition.’ Ironically, Mr Jinnah used exactly this issue to illustrate the Two-Nation Theory. Hindus worship the cow and Muslims eat it, he pointed out, so how could they be one nation?

At another level, Thursday’s violence in the Assembly chamber highlighted the fact that democracy in Jammu and Kashmir has never functioned through debate and consensus. It has either been conducted through demonstrative protest, as in the Independent MLA’s beef party, or violence, as by RSS members in the Assembly chamber. In fact, the structures of democracy have remained a sham for the most part.

Until recently, most elections have been rigged. Chief ministers have repeatedly been changed at New Delhi’s whim. Assembly resolutions have been dismissed out of hand.

Chief Minister Mufti Sayeed had changed the discourse substantially during his first stint in power (2002-2005) following elections that were universally said to be free and fair. He gave his deputy chief minister due regard, consulted his coalition partners and the opposition, and nurtured democratic space in the traumatised Valley. However, he could not adequately accommodate, or perhaps even grasp, the aspirations that had rapidly grown in Jammu since the 1990s.

Jammu’s rapid economic expansion since the early 1990s gave Jammuites’ longstanding resentment against perceived domination political ballast. Ghulam Nabi Azad’s dynamic development work, particularly across the Jammu division, when he came to power from 2005 to 2008, made it likely that the Congress would win the 2008 election with a near-majority. The panicking PDP seized upon land transfer to the Amarnath Shrine Board, Governor SK Sinha’s pet project for expanding the Hindu pilgrimage. It became a convenient political issue. The resultant conflagration severely damaged the social fabric of the state.

None of the political parties that played land transfer politics in 2008 realised quite how divisive it would become. Now that the chief gainer, the BJP, has joined hands with the party that had hoped to gain, the duo seems to have got involved in a more dangerous game, even if inadvertently. Any leaders worth their name in either party would do well to point their party strategists to lessons about the costs of mixing religion with politics which could be learnt from the US-Pakistan axis’ lethal experiment with the geopolitics of jihad three decades ago.

Udhampur: Kashmir-bound truck attacked with petrol bomb, six arrested

Three persons, including a policeman, received burn injuries when a Kashmir-bound truck was attacked with a petrol bomb in the district following which six persons have been arrested.

Representational image.

Three persons, including a policeman, received burn injuries when a Kashmir-bound truck was attacked with a petrol bomb in the district following which six persons have been arrested.”CCTV footage helped us nab two persons who were seen throwing combustible substance on a Kashmir-bound truck at Shiv Nagar area of the district,” Deputy Commissioner (DC) Udhampur, Shahid Iqbal Choudhary, told PTI.After the questioning of the two accused, they revealed the identity of four more persons who were involved in the attack on the truck last night, he said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”All the six accused have been arrested and booked under various sections of the Ranbir Penal Code (RPC) including under the section of inciting communal tension in the state,” he said.Three persons, including a policeman, driver and conductor received burn injuries when two persons first broke the front glass of the truck and later threw a petrol bomb inside the truck late last night, a police officer said.Three persons were sleeping inside the truck at the time of the incident, the officer said.The truck was on its way to Srinagar from Jammu and was stationary since Friday near Shiv Nagar area as traffic on Jammu-Srinagar National Highway was stopped in view of the day-long strike called by various Hindu outfits following recovery of three carcasses of cows in the district.He said that two persons in the truck Zahid (19) and Showkat (35) received serious burn injuries and a policeman who tried to help douse the fire also received some burn injuries in the incident. The injured were first shifted to the District Hospital.Udhampur and later referred to Government Medical College (GMC) Hospital in Jammu.Three districts of Jammu region including Udhampur, Kathua and Reasi observed a complete strike Friday after three carcasses of cows were found behind the office of the Sub-Divisional Magistrate (SDM) in Chenani area of Udhampur district.The strike was also called to protest against Independent MLA Engineer Rashid’s ‘Beef Party’ in Srinagar.Another carcass of a cow was today recovered from Gandala area of Udhampur district. However, the administration said the cow had died a natural death.”Today, carcass of another bovine animal was recovered in the district but the veterinary doctors on examination found that it was an old carcass and the animal had died a natural death. Local residents agreed with it,” the DC said.

Kashmir: Three receive burn injuries in petrol bomb attack in Udhampur

He said that the traffic on the Jammu-Srinagar National Highway was halted since yesterday following the day-long strike call given by various Hindu outfits following the recovery of three carcasses of cows in the districts.

Representational image.

Three persons, including a policeman, received burn injuries when a Kashmir bound truck was allegedly attacked with a petrol bomb in this district of Jammu and Kashmir.”Three persons including a policeman, co driver and conductor received burn injuries when an unknown man first broke the front glass of the truck and later threw a petrol bomb inside the truck late last night,” a police officer said.Three persons — the truck driver, a co driver and a conductor — were sleeping inside the truck at the time of the incident, the officer said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>He said that the traffic on the Jammu-Srinagar National Highway was halted since yesterday following the day-long strike call given by various Hindu outfits following the recovery of three carcasses of cows in the districts.The truck was on its way to Srinagar from Jammu and was halted since yesterday morning near the Shiv Nagar area of the district, the officer said.He said that two inmates of the truck Zahid (19) and Showkat (35) received serious burn injuries and a policeman who tried to help douse the fire also received some burn injuries in the incident.The injured were first shifted to the District Hospital Udhampur and later referred to Government Medical College (GMC) hospital in Jammu, he said.The police said that several people have been detained for questioning in connection with the incident.”Several people have been taken into custody for questioning and we are hopeful to identify and arrest the culprits soon,” the officer said.Three districts of Jammu region including Udhampur, Kathua and Reasi observed a complete strike yesterday after three carcasses of cows were found behind the office of the Sub-Divisional Magistrate (SDM) in the Chenani area of Udhampur district.The strike was also called to protest against Independent MLA Engineer Rashid’s ‘Beef Party’ in Srinagar.

Call for Jammu bandh tomorrow over MLA Engineer Rashid’s beef party

Jammu has extended its backing for the Bandh call while the chambers of commerce and industries have refused to extend their support.

VHP today demanded immediate arrest of Rashid for hosting ‘Beef party’ (File Photo of Kashmiri Pandit protest against beef party)

PTI
A call for a day-long bandh in Jammu tomorrow was given on Friday by Panthers Party, which was supported by High Court Bar Association, to protest the killing of cows in Udhampur district and the ‘beef party’ hosted by Independent MLA Engineer Rashid. The Panthers Party has “called for a complete one-day Jammu Bandh to protest against the killing of three cows in Udhampur district yesterday. The party will also be protesting against the beef party that was hosted by the Independent MLA Engineer Rashid,” its spokesman said.The Jammu and Kashmir High Court Bar Association, Jammu has extended its backing for the Bandh call while the chambers of commerce and industries have refused to extend their support. “We have decided to extend our support to the Jammu bandh call to protest the killing of cows in Udhampur and the beef party hosted by engineer Rashid”, a spokesman of the Bar Association Jammu said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The transporters union in Jammu have so far not taken any decision on extending support. “We are yet to decide whether to extend support or not,” a spokesman of the transporters union said. Meanwhile, VHP today demanded immediate arrest of Rashid for hosting ‘Beef party’ but said it will neither support nor oppose the Jammu Bandh.

200 years later beef ban divides Kashmir on communal and regional lines

Even though Supreme Court provided the much-needed reprieve to the Jammu and Kashmir government by directing Chief Justice of J&K High Court to examine the legal issues relating to the prohibition and the validity of the law banning beef and slaughter of cows, there is no let up in the tensions, brewing on communal, regional and party lines. It was played on the floor of the Assembly on Thursday, when an independent MLA, who had organised a beef party was thrashed by rival legislatures.
Over the years, ban had been largely accepted socially in Kashmir, since it was imposed by Sikh governor Dewan Moti Ram, on basis of a petition by Kashmiri Pandits in 1819. The famed Kashmiri cuisine is also based on sheep and not even goat meat. In Central Kashmir Srinagar and adjoining districts, eating buff or beef has remained a taboo. But with the avoidable controversy starting with a court order, the anathema towards beef is changing.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> A renewed campaign is on to show that the anti-beef law is a relic of unpopular and oppressive rulers. An independent MLA Engineer Rashid hosted a beef party at MLA hostel and last month a BJP leader from South Kashmir Khursheed Malik, who had unsuccessfully contested the 2014 assembly elections from Kokernag, announced to hold beef party, to give social acceptability to the consumption of beef in a Muslim-majority state. Out of 25 states, where cow slaughter is banned and punishable under law, Muslim majority Jammu and Kashmir is the only state, where it invites the harshest penalty of 10 years of rigorous imprisonment. Over past 195 years, since the law is in vogue, historians have recorded that 19 people in Srinagar have were executed publicly for cow slaughter. In other states the sentences vary between six months to 7 years, like Gujarat (7years), Delhi (5 years), Haryana (5 years) and Maharashtra 5 years. In J&K, even possession of flesh of killed or slaughtered animals is also an offence punishable with imprisonment up to 1 year and fine. Historian GMD Sufi records that Moti Ram’s successor Dewan Chuni Lal had ordered hanging of Srinagar’s noted trader Khawaja Mohiuddin Kaosa and his son-in-law Mirza Kallu. Their dead bodies were dragged through the streets of Srinagar for the alleged offence of cow slaughter. In 1845, historians record burning of 17 family members of Pirzada Samad Baba Qadri of Chatabal Srinagar in dry willow and cow dung because cow-slaughter.“This dastardly execution was supervised by the Thanadar Bholka Nath.” AR Khanday in his book Sikh Rule In Kashmir records. British author Anthony George Shiell has recorded in his ‘A year In India’ after visiting Kashmir in 1880 that rulers’ tenderness begins and ends with the ‘sacred’ cow. In his ‘Making of a Frontier’ (published 1900), Algernon Durand wrote: “There were still at this time unfortunate Mahomedans in prison at Srinagar, who had been confined for years, for keeping themselves and families alive during a famine by killing and eating cows.” Political scientist Prof Gull M Wani tells dna that according to his research, there have been cases of men being boiled in oil for killing a cow. “In 1920 out of the 117 prisoners in Kashmir jails 97 were held for cow slaughter,” he claims. In Dogra rule, which started in 1846, however, the sentence was reduced from death to 10 years rigorous imprisonment and fine. By the end of 1944, Chief Justice of J&K High Court had suggested reducing the sentence to only two years. But nothing happened. After nearly 200 years now unavoidable controversy is threatening to tear apart not only the society but the first PDP-BJP alliance government, which was taken by surprise when its own deputy advocate general contested his own government in the court and secured an order from Jammu bench of High Court against beef ban, though already in vogue. Against this a former law professor of Kashmir University Dr. M A Qadri filed partition before Srinagar bench of High Court seeking annulling of anti-beef laws.

Manmohan had handed over secret files on Kashmir talks with Pak to Modi, says report

Former prime minister Manmohan Singh had handed over files linked to a draft framework agreement with Pakistan on the Kashmir issue to current PM Narendra Modi on his way out, a report has revealed.

Ex-PM Manmohan Singh (left) with PM Narendra Modi. Reuters

Ex-PM Manmohan Singh (left) with PM Narendra Modi. Reuters

According to this Indian Express report, a senior Indian diplomat familiar with the then Kashmir talks said that the final draft of this framework agreement between Manmohan Singh and Pakistani military ruler General Pervez Musharraf included a ‘consultative mechanism’ which had been devised so that the Kashmir region could be jointly managed by India and Pakistan.

The report further said that this consultative mechanism, composed of the elected representatives of the government of Jammu and Kashmir as well as that of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, was supposed to address regional issues like tourism, religious pilgrimages, culture and trade.

However, New Delhi had rejected Musharraf‘s push for joint management of Kashmir, saying that it would harm Indian sovereignty. Moreover, this draft agreement also led to protests in Pakistan by lawyers, because of which it couldn’t be taken forward.

Even former Pakistan foreign minister Khurshid Kasuri, who is in New Delhi to release the Indian edition of his book ‘Neither a Hawk Nor a Dove‘, said that this draft agreement had planned joint management of Kashmir by India and Pakistan.

Kasuri also said on Thursday that the only solution to the vexed issue of Kashmir is by adopting backchannel diplomacy.

“Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi should appoint backchannel negotiators instantly and shouldn’t announce it in public. He should appoint people whom he can trust,” Kasuri told IANS ahead of the release of his book.

He also said a prospect of war would be catastrophic for both the countries.

“There has been lot of negative statements happening on both sides. We tried nine wars and have had near-war situations. If we keep repeating things, it would be catastrophic,” he added.

Expressing hope that Modi would take the peace process forward, Kasuri said: “I would like Modi to make history, if he doesn’t want to, that’s his prerogative.” Kasuri is a member of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party led by Imran Khan.

Referring to the recent war of words between the two countries at the UN General Assembly, Kasuri said that neither country can afford to have any more “Ufa moments”.

India and Pakistan had issued a joint statement at the Shanghai Cooperation Organization summit in Ufa, Russia, held in July this year after a meeting between the two prime ministers. The leaders had agreed to keep Kashmir out of the statement, focussing on security level talks among the two national security advisers.

“How can they issue a joint statement by not mentioning Kashmir? This is a cardinal mistake. The proposed NSA level talks between the two countries didn’t happen because of Ufa,” Kasuri said.

(With inputs from IANS)

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