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‘Awakened’ Hindus can lead world on path of peace: RSS Gen Sec Suresh Joshi

Some 700 delegates from various countries are taking part in the camp, organised by Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh, a cultural outfit. It will conclude on January 3.

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3rd anniversary of Nirbhaya’s death: Victim’s parents to launch nation-wide protest if convicts not given death sentence

Of the six rapists, while one committed suicide, another convict, a juvenile at the time of the crime, was recently released after spending three years at a correctional home.

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Kerala CM hails Supreme Court verdict upholding liquor policy

With the new liquor policy, only 27 five-star hotels in Kerala would have liquor bars. Besides this, 33 clubs also have license to serve liquor.The policy also had proposed to close down 10 per cent of the IMFL retail outlets of Kerala State Beverages Corporation, which is the sole distributor of IMFL in the state. With this, 36 IMFL outlets would be shut down every year.

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Modi in Pakistan: PM Modi’s Lahore visit ‘step in the right direction’, says J&K CM Mufti Mohammed Sayeed

Sayeed was yesterday admitted to AIIMS here after he complained of uneasiness at his residence in Srinagar and was flown to Delhi in a state aircraft. The 79-year-old PDP leader was admitted in the private ward of the premier medical institute.

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Modi in Pakistan: PM Modi’s Lahore visit ‘step in the right direction’, says J&K CM Mufti Mohammed Sayeed Sayeed hoped that the meeting between the two leaders will provide the much-needed momentum to the Comprehensive Bilateral Dialogue for peaceful resolution of all issues between the two countries.
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Keep it up: PM Narendra Modi tells ITBP squad at Kabul Embassy in Afghanistan

A Christmas Miracle: Twitter reacts to Narendra Modi’s ‘impromptu’ Pakistan visit!

Modi in Pakistan: Here is how separatists are reacting to PM Narendra Modi’s surprise visit to Lahore
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Also ReadIndiaModi in Pakistan: PM has taken a ‘courageous’ step, says Sudheendra KulkarniIndiaWatch: PM Narendra Modi greeted by PM Nawaz Sharif at Lahore airportIndiaPM Modi’s Pakistan visit path-breaking departure from protocol-driven politics: BJPIndiaSchools in India like factories churning out products: Madhavan NairIndiaJD(U) ‘shocked’ by PM Modi’s surprise visit to PakistanIndiaModi’s stopover in Pakistan: Sushma Swaraj says PM Modi acted like a ‘statesman’ <!– /.block –>

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Modi in Pakistan: PM has taken a ‘courageous’ step, says Sudheendra Kulkarni

“Modi going to Lahore and meeting Sharif on Atalji’s birthday is a pleasant surprise,” he said. “Today is also the birthday of Muhammad Ali Jinnah, founder of Pakistan. Jinnah wanted India and Pakistan to live together in peace,” he said. Hameed Haroon, the chief executive officer of Karachi-based Dawn Group of Publications who is currently visiting Mumbai, said “Modi has made an adroit move”. “This visit indicates that he wants good relations between the two neighbours,” Haroon said.

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Modi in Pakistan: PM Modi’s Lahore visit ‘step in the right direction’, says J&K CM Mufti Mohammed Sayeed Sayeed hoped that the meeting between the two leaders will provide the much-needed momentum to the Comprehensive Bilateral Dialogue for peaceful resolution of all issues between the two countries.
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Keep it up: PM Narendra Modi tells ITBP squad at Kabul Embassy in Afghanistan

A Christmas Miracle: Twitter reacts to Narendra Modi’s ‘impromptu’ Pakistan visit!

Modi in Pakistan: Here is how separatists are reacting to PM Narendra Modi’s surprise visit to Lahore
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Also ReadIndiaModi in Pakistan: PM has taken a ‘courageous’ step, says Sudheendra KulkarniIndiaWatch: PM Narendra Modi greeted by PM Nawaz Sharif at Lahore airportIndiaPM Modi’s Pakistan visit path-breaking departure from protocol-driven politics: BJPIndiaSchools in India like factories churning out products: Madhavan NairIndiaJD(U) ‘shocked’ by PM Modi’s surprise visit to PakistanIndiaModi’s stopover in Pakistan: Sushma Swaraj says PM Modi acted like a ‘statesman’ <!– /.block –>

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PM Modi’s Pakistan visit path-breaking departure from protocol-driven politics: BJP

“We had the Ufa statement which was focused on our primary concern that is terrorism. There were hiccups after that. Then we had the Bangkok talk. Our Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj visited Pakistan. “If the two countrioes can try to have a positive approach and work out a relationship that brings peace not only between them but to the entire region and therefore to the world, then that is something that should be welcomed,” he said.

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Modi in Pakistan: PM Modi’s Lahore visit ‘step in the right direction’, says J&K CM Mufti Mohammed Sayeed Sayeed hoped that the meeting between the two leaders will provide the much-needed momentum to the Comprehensive Bilateral Dialogue for peaceful resolution of all issues between the two countries.
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Keep it up: PM Narendra Modi tells ITBP squad at Kabul Embassy in Afghanistan

A Christmas Miracle: Twitter reacts to Narendra Modi’s ‘impromptu’ Pakistan visit!

Modi in Pakistan: Here is how separatists are reacting to PM Narendra Modi’s surprise visit to Lahore
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Also ReadIndiaModi in Pakistan: PM has taken a ‘courageous’ step, says Sudheendra KulkarniIndiaWatch: PM Narendra Modi greeted by PM Nawaz Sharif at Lahore airportIndiaPM Modi’s Pakistan visit path-breaking departure from protocol-driven politics: BJPIndiaSchools in India like factories churning out products: Madhavan NairIndiaJD(U) ‘shocked’ by PM Modi’s surprise visit to PakistanIndiaModi’s stopover in Pakistan: Sushma Swaraj says PM Modi acted like a ‘statesman’ <!– /.block –>

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Schools in India like factories churning out products: Madhavan Nair

He also advocated the need for exposing school students to the challenges of science and technology and fostering the scientific temper in them. “Though we have a large human resource base, we will cut a sorry figure in front of other nations if we don’t pay attention to these,” Nair said.

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Modi in Pakistan: PM Modi’s Lahore visit ‘step in the right direction’, says J&K CM Mufti Mohammed Sayeed Sayeed hoped that the meeting between the two leaders will provide the much-needed momentum to the Comprehensive Bilateral Dialogue for peaceful resolution of all issues between the two countries.
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Keep it up: PM Narendra Modi tells ITBP squad at Kabul Embassy in Afghanistan

A Christmas Miracle: Twitter reacts to Narendra Modi’s ‘impromptu’ Pakistan visit!

Modi in Pakistan: Here is how separatists are reacting to PM Narendra Modi’s surprise visit to Lahore
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Also ReadIndiaModi in Pakistan: PM has taken a ‘courageous’ step, says Sudheendra KulkarniIndiaWatch: PM Narendra Modi greeted by PM Nawaz Sharif at Lahore airportIndiaPM Modi’s Pakistan visit path-breaking departure from protocol-driven politics: BJPIndiaSchools in India like factories churning out products: Madhavan NairIndiaJD(U) ‘shocked’ by PM Modi’s surprise visit to PakistanIndiaModi’s stopover in Pakistan: Sushma Swaraj says PM Modi acted like a ‘statesman’ <!– /.block –>

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JD(U) ‘shocked’ by PM Modi’s surprise visit to Pakistan

The ties between India and Pakistan have witnessed some positive developments, however, after a chill of several months. The two countries recently decided to launch a comprehensive dialogue after Modi and Sharif met in Paris recently. But Tyagi said in the wake of Modi’s surprise move that “nothing is going to improve unless the leaders of Pakistan change their mindset. Pakistan should know that friendship with India on one hand and betrayal on the other cannot go together.”

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Modi in Pakistan: PM Modi’s Lahore visit ‘step in the right direction’, says J&K CM Mufti Mohammed Sayeed Sayeed hoped that the meeting between the two leaders will provide the much-needed momentum to the Comprehensive Bilateral Dialogue for peaceful resolution of all issues between the two countries.
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Keep it up: PM Narendra Modi tells ITBP squad at Kabul Embassy in Afghanistan

A Christmas Miracle: Twitter reacts to Narendra Modi’s ‘impromptu’ Pakistan visit!

Modi in Pakistan: Here is how separatists are reacting to PM Narendra Modi’s surprise visit to Lahore
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Also ReadIndiaModi in Pakistan: PM has taken a ‘courageous’ step, says Sudheendra KulkarniIndiaWatch: PM Narendra Modi greeted by PM Nawaz Sharif at Lahore airportIndiaPM Modi’s Pakistan visit path-breaking departure from protocol-driven politics: BJPIndiaSchools in India like factories churning out products: Madhavan NairIndiaJD(U) ‘shocked’ by PM Modi’s surprise visit to PakistanIndiaModi’s stopover in Pakistan: Sushma Swaraj says PM Modi acted like a ‘statesman’ <!– /.block –>

<!– /#sidebar-second –>Looking back at 2015: OROP controversy, daring rescue operations kept Defence Ministry in News<!– /.block –> <!– /#content_bottom –>

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Modi’s stopover in Pakistan: Sushma Swaraj says PM Modi acted like a ‘statesman’

Earlier, Modi had wished Sharif on his birthday. “Spoke to PM Nawaz Sharif and wished him on his birthday,” Modi had tweeted. Modi’s sudden visit comes within days of both countries deciding to re-engage in “Comprehensive Bilateral Dialogue”. The Foreign Secretaries of India and Pakistan are scheduled to meet next month to discuss modalities about the dialogue.

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Modi in Pakistan: PM Modi’s Lahore visit ‘step in the right direction’, says J&K CM Mufti Mohammed Sayeed Sayeed hoped that the meeting between the two leaders will provide the much-needed momentum to the Comprehensive Bilateral Dialogue for peaceful resolution of all issues between the two countries.
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Keep it up: PM Narendra Modi tells ITBP squad at Kabul Embassy in Afghanistan

A Christmas Miracle: Twitter reacts to Narendra Modi’s ‘impromptu’ Pakistan visit!

Modi in Pakistan: Here is how separatists are reacting to PM Narendra Modi’s surprise visit to Lahore
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J&K CM Mufti Mohammad Sayeed flown to Delhi after complaining of uneasiness

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After complaining of uneasiness, Mufti Mohammad Sayeed was flown to Delhi, to be admitted to AIIMS.

J&K Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed

Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed was flown to Delhi, on Thursday, after he complained of some uneasiness at his residence in Srinagar.79-year-old Sayeed was rushed to Delhi in a state aircraft and will be taken to the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), official sources said.He had taken over as Chief Minister of a PDP-BJP alliance government in March, 2015.

Ex J&K CM Omar Abdullah slams Narendra Modi over ‘growing intolerance’

People are concerned over the growing sense of communal polarisation and intolerance in the country. Incidents like those witnessed in Uttar Pradesh’s Dadri and Udhampur here are blots on the social fabric of our country and will continue to haunt the nation’s collective conscience for years to come,” the NC leader said during a rally. He addressed two public meetings at Khari and Banihal areas of Ramban district.

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Growing “intolerance” in the country and the incidents in Udhampur and Dadri are blots on the social fabric of the country and will continue to hauntthe nation’s collective conscience for years to come, former chief minister Omar Abdullah said. Slamming the state government, the National Conference’s working president said several core issues have been sidelined by PDP post its alliance with BJP and this might lead to feeling of further alienation among people in the state.”People are concerned over the growing sense of communal polarisation and intolerance in the country. Incidents like those witnessed in Uttar Pradesh’s Dadri and Udhampur here are blots on the social fabric of our country and will continue to haunt the nation’s collective conscience for years to come,” the NC leader said during a rally. He addressed two public meetings at Khari and Banihal areas of Ramban district.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Referring to the death of a truck conductor in a petrol bomb attack last month, he said that the murderous attack on the trucker in Udhampur by a frenzied, communal mob highlights the gravity of the situation the state is confronted with. Criticising the state government, Omar alleged that the PDP-BJP coalition’s policy of putting core political issues on the back burner did not auger well for the prospects of peace and stability within J&K as well as the South Asian region.He claimed that the spate in incidents of intolerance and communal confrontation in the country has created a sense of despondency and restlessness that could have far-reaching, adverse implications for the next generation.”PDP has acted as a ‘political courier’ that carried the alien ideology of intolerance and communal polarisation into J and K at the behest of those who have always harboured a dream to fragment and polarise the state,” he said. “Jammu and Kashmir has witnessed a prolonged period of political unrest and turmoil. A state like ours cannot be starved of political engagement and initiatives to bring the disgruntled and disillusioned elements into the fold of our democratic processes and systems,” he said.Omar said the “continued failure” of PDP-BJP to articulate the need for political engagement with internal and external stakeholders is a threat to the fragile peace in J&K that has been earned after years of political persistence. “A lot of core political issues have been sidelined by the PDP post its alliance with the BJP and this risks further alienation and isolation in the state,” he claimed. Referring to the Rs 80,000 crore package recently announced for the state by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Omar said just numerics would not benefit people on the ground. “Packages alone would not help Jammu and Kashmir to emerge from the shadows of political uncertainty and unrest. It is very important that the political dimensions of the Kashmir issue are also addressed.”Economic packages need to be supplemented with political initiatives and measures. I spoke about this in the presence of a visiting Prime Minister and also articulated this in the Legislative Assembly,” he said.Targetting PDP, Omar said that during 2014 Parliamentary and Assembly elections in the state, Mufti Mohammed Sayeed and Mehbooba Mufti campaigned against BJP and sought votes to stop its political march into the state.”But as soon as the election results were out, PDP leaders rushed to Nagpur and New Delhi to embrace top BJP and RSS leaders. Since the very incorporation of PDP, National Conference had highlighted their inherent political nexus with the BJP. Today, their political affiliation with the BJP and RSS is out in the open,” he alleged.Omar further claimed that his party had offered to provide unconditional outside support to PDP during the process of government formation but Sayeed had refused saying his party was looking for massive funding to the state which it will receive by aligning with BJP.He said that the Chief Minister’s office had been “trivialised” under Sayeed ,and that the existing atmosphere of “helplessness and political ineffectiveness” in the state could create an aversion towards a democratic system.Omar lashed out at the government over “developmental inertia” in the state especially the far-flung areas and for neglecting the aspirations of the state’s unemployed youth. “The perpetual delays in releasing timely wages to different categories of workers besides failure to provide financial assistance to categorized segments of the population has resulted in unimaginable miseries and an overall atmosphere of vulnerability and penury,” he said. “The promise of round-the-clock electricity has turned out to be another big, cruel joke,” he added.

No surprise if PDP shuns BJP to ally with Congress, says Omar Abdullah

However, the PDP rubbished the claims saying the coalition government will complete its full term as the alliance with BJP was an opportunity to bring the regions of the state closer and keep Jammu and Kashmir united.

Omar Abdullah

Opposition National Conference leader Omar Abdullah on Monday said he would not be surprised if PDP ended its alliance with BJP and formed a government in coalition with Congress and independent MLAs in Jammu and Kashmir but Mufti Mohammad Sayeed’s party ruled it out.”After the Modi/Mufti accord where Mufti Sahib and his party are concerned nothing would surprise me Junaid,” Omar said in a tweet. Omar was responding to a post on twitter by National Conference spokesperson Junaid Azim Mattu who claimed that there were strong rumours about PDP realigning with the Congress and some independent MLAs. “Strong rumours about PDP’s imminent realignment with the Congress and some independent legislators. Would you be surprised?” Mattu said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>However, the PDP rubbished the claims saying the coalition government will complete its full term as the alliance with BJP was an opportunity to bring the regions of the state closer and keep Jammu and Kashmir united. “The alliance with BJP was forged after proper and detailed thought by PDP patron Mufti Mohammad Sayeed after consulting all party leaders.”In view of the mandate in 2014 assembly elections, it is an opportunity as well as a big challenge to keep the state united,” PDP chief spokesman Mehboob Beg told PTI. Beg, who quit National Conference ahead of the Assembly elections, said the former chief minister should stop worrying about the coalition issues. “This coalition will complete full term. He (Omar) should stop bothering about these issues,” he added.

‘Omar should stop bothering’ about the alliance: PDP spokesman says PDP-BJP coalition will complete full term

Srinagar: Opposition National Conference leader Omar Abdullah said on Monday that he  would not be surprised if PDP ended its alliance with BJP and formed a government in coalition with Congress and independent MLAs in Jammu and Kashmir but Mufti Mohammad Sayeed’s party ruled it out. “After the Modi/Mufti accord where Mufti Sahib and his party are concerned nothing would surprise me Junaid,” Omar said in a tweet.

Omar Abdullah and Mehboob Beg. IBNLiveOmar Abdullah and Mehboob Beg. IBNLive

Omar Abdullah and Mehboob Beg. IBNLive

Omar was responding to a post on twitter by National Conference spokesperson Junaid Azim Mattu who claimed that there were strong rumours about PDP realigning with the Congress and some independent MLAs. “Strong rumours about PDP’s imminent realignment with the Congress and some independent legislators. Would you be surprised?” Mattu said. However, the PDP rubbished the claims saying the coalition government will complete its full term as the alliance with BJP was an opportunity to bring the regions of the state closer and keep Jammu and Kashmir united. “The alliance with BJP was forged after proper and detailed thought by PDP patron Mufti Mohammad Sayeed after consulting all party leaders. “In view of the mandate in 2014 assembly elections, it is an opportunity as well as a big challenge to keep the state united,” PDP chief spokesman Mehboob Beg said. Beg, who quit National Conference ahead of the Assembly elections, said the former chief minister should stop worrying about the coalition issues. “This coalition will complete full term. He (Omar) should stop bothering about these issues,” he added.

PTI

Mehbooba Mufti readying to become next chief minister of Jammu & Kashmir?

The CM showered praises on his daughter and credited her with the victory in the polls in the state.

Otherwise, she was satisfied with her role of a single mother of two young daughters following her divorce from her husband.

Is Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) president Mehbooba Mufti readying to take over reins of power from her father Mufti Mohammad Sayeed and become the next chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir? Sayeed on Friday dropped enough hints for Mehbooba’s takeover, though he did not specify any time frame for the change of guard in the state. “It (handing over reins of power to Mehbooba) is a democratic process… It will be the party’s decision. Who comes in is not the issue this time, however,” Mufti told reporters in Jammu. The CM showered praises on his daughter and credited her with the victory in the polls in the state.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”She is working tirelessly in the field and strengthening the party base. Consolidation of party’s base is not because of me, but because of Mehbooba. I find very little time for party affairs. It was because of her that we won the elections in Bijbehera in 1996,” Mufti said. Speculations are rife that Mehbooba was being groomed to take over as chief minister from her father. However, there has been no official confirmation about the transition of power in the state until Friday when Mufti dropped enough of hints of possible transition of power. A law graduate, Mehbooba, 55, holds the record of not losing any election from south Kashmir either for the assembly or Parliament. A reluctant politician initially, Mehbooba plunged into electoral fray in 1996 from her home constituency of Bijbhera on the instance of her father who was then the tallest Congress leader of J&K. Otherwise, she was satisfied with her role of a single mother of two young daughters following her divorce from her husband.However, the transition would not to be a smooth affair given the internal bickering within PDP over aligning with the BJP in the state. Lok Sabha MPs from Srinagar and Baramulla constituencies, Tariq Karra and Muzaffar Baig respectively, have openely castigated the party for entering into an alliance with BJP for power. Tariq 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, even went to the extent of asking Mufti to walk out of the alliance and align with the secular forces. However, the chief minister put up a brave face saying the dissent is the essence of democracy. “Dissent is the essence of democracy. Muzaffar Hussain Baig is senior party leader and he has every right to have his own point of view… Anybody can share his views. I am not the sole authority”, he said.Elaborating, Mufti noted that dissent is in every party and they should welcome it. “We should engage in a debate. Whatever I did on March 1 (the date when PDP-BJP government was formed) I see a level of satisfaction among the people on the ground,” he said.

Reconciliation with Pakistan is my dream, says Jammu and Kashmir CM Mufti Mohammad Sayeed

Mufti said that he will continue perusing the agenda of reconciliation with the neighbouring country with Prime Minister Narendra Modi

Mufti Mohammad Sayeed

Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed on Friday said reconciliation with Pakistan is on the agenda of the ruling PDP-BJP alliance in the state but termed it as an “evolutionary process”.Mufti said that he will continue perusing the agenda of reconciliation with the neighbouring country with Prime Minister Narendra Modi. When asked about why he termed the Modi’s Srinagar rally as historic even though he did talk about reconciliation with Pakistan, Mufti said,”Modi is not under any pressure to talk about Pakistan.” Mufti said that Modi has been totally focused on the development of the state.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”You (media) should not jump to conclusions. Everything is in an evolutionary process… Whatever is that. Reconciliation with Pakistan, it is on the agenda of alliance,” Mufti told a press conference at his residence here today.”It (reconciliation with Pakistan) is there. I have high hope on that. Why should we make Prime Minister say everything like that (talk about reconciliation with Pakistan). Why should he say that. He is not under pressure to say that,” Mufti said.The PDP chief was replying to a volley of questions on the Prime Minister’s rally in Srinagar. “I met the Prime Minister in private and impressed upon him that it will be good to talk to Pakistan the way Atal Bihari Vajpayee did. But he is PM of the country. But there is no option except reconciliation,” he said. The chief minister said,”I have been insisting on that.It (reconciliation with Pakistan) is a process. It is not necessary that the PM will accept everything like this as of now.” “I say if there is friendship with Pakistan, we are bestowed with peace here. During the Vajpayee’s period he got peace and everything was peaceful. I will not give up my effort, it will be my endeavour to pursue it with the PM to have reconciliation and that is my dream,” he added.Asked whether Modi is proving to be difficult for you as compared to Vajpayee as far as holding talks with Pakistan is concerned, Mufti said, “during my previous meetings with him, Modi has been totally focused on Jammu and Kashmir on development front. Good governance and development one major issue.” “When he (Modi) entered into alliance with me, it (reconciliation with Pakistan) is written there that there will be friendly relations with the neighbouring state. “It is not possible that Mufti will achieve everything in one go. It is important that I be able to create atmosphere of friendship between two countries,” he added.”In the end, it is PM’s own choice whether to touch any subject or not; I am not a dictator who will dictate all things to him,” Mufti said. Replying to another question about whether the state government will address Jammu as per new coined word of ‘Naya’ Jammu and Kashmir, Mufti said, “We are as serious as never before. Justice will be done to every region.” “We will empower people. We will hold civic elections etc. We will go for devolution of the powers and empower block committees and district panels in the decision making setup,” he said.On the question whether the Centre has sanctioned two AIIMS for J&K, he said “there will two full-fledged AIIMS in J&K …one for Jammu and another for Kashmir. Rs 2,000 crore have been earmarked for Kashmir and Jammu regions for setting up of two AIIMS.”

Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Yasin Malik attack Jammu & Kashmir CM Mufti Sayeed for praising PM Modi

Reacting to Sayeed’s statement that Modi is not “intolerant”, Syed Ali Shah Geelani said he has “unmasked” himself.
File Photo
PTI
Separatist leaders Syed Ali Shah Geelani and Yasin Malik on Tuesday attacked Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed for showering praise on Prime Minister Narendra Modi.”The puppet Chief Minister’s praise of Modi and Hindu fanatic RSS is reflective of his ideological and physical slavery. In fact, Mufti Sayeed is working as a bridge for the RSS to sacrifice Jammu and Kashmir to the communal forces,” Geelani, chairman of hardline Hurriyat Conference, said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Reacting to Sayeed’s statement that Modi is not “intolerant”, Geelani said he has “unmasked” himself. JKLF chief Mohammad Yasin Malik also reacted sharply to Sayeed’s statement.”His statement glorifying Modi and calling him non-communal shows how far he can go down for the lust of power,” he said.Terming Sayeed’s statement as most “absurd and ridiculous”, Malik said, “This is a clear example of being more loyal than the king.”

PM Modi’s visit will be turning point in J&K’s history: Mufti Mohammad Sayeed

“I met Modi a couple of times and realized that he genuinely wants to win the hearts and minds of people of the state,” Sayeed said.

Urging India and Pakistan to shun confrontation and engage in a meaningful dialogue, Sayeed said the state is the first casualty of tension between the two countries.

Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed on Sunday said Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s upcoming visit here will be a “turning point” in the history of Jammu and Kashmir and the people of the state have great expectations from it. “People have great expectations from the visit of the Prime Minister who is a visionary and has his eyes fixed on overall development of Jammu and Kashmir. I see this as a turning point in the history of the state,” Sayeed said while recalling former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s address to the people at Sher-e-Kashmir Stadium at Sonwar in 2003. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Modi is scheduled to address a rally at the same venue on November 7. The Chief Minister, while addressing a public meeting here, cited several instances where the Centre extended wholehearted support in core sectors linked to connectivity, healthcare, education and rural development. He said the Prime Minister had personally intervened in speeding up work of four-lanning of Srinagar-Jammu National Highway and broadening the scope of railway network in the state. “I met Modi a couple of times and realized that he genuinely wants to win the hearts and minds of people of the state,” Sayeed said.He also praised Modi for inviting his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif in his swearing-in ceremony last year.Urging India and Pakistan to shun confrontation and engage in a meaningful dialogue, Sayeed said the state is the first casualty of tension between the two countries.He stressed that if India has to emerge as a world power, it will have to foster and maintain friendly ties with all its neighbours, including Pakistan.

Dussehra celebrated in Kashmir Valley

Kashmiri Pandits restarted celebrating the festival in the Valley after the gap of 20 years in 2007 and the celebrations are an annual feature since then.

The effigy of demon king Ravana goes up in flames during Dussehra festival in Jammu on Thursday.

PTI
Dussehra, the festival signifying the victory of good over evil, was celebrated with religious fervour and enthusiasm in Kashmir Valley on Thursday. Kashmiri Pandits and Hindus burnt giant effigies of Ravana, Kumbhakarna and Meghnath installed at Polo ground in Srinagar.Hundreds of people, including women and children braved restrictions imposed by police and thronged the ground to witness the fireworks and the ritual of burning the effigies this evening.Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, accompanied by several cabinet colleagues, was also present at the celebrations. The event was organised by Kashmiri Pandits Sangarsh Samiti (KPSS). Dussehra is celebrated on the culmination of nine days of Navratras.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Kashmiri Pandits restarted celebrating the festival in the Valley after the gap of 20 years in 2007 and the celebrations are an annual feature since then.

Jammu and Kashmir: Mufti Mohammed Sayeed meets PM Modi on fast-tracking development

He referred to the kitty of Rs 6,000 crore allocated to Jammu and Kashmir under the centrally-sponsored schemes.

“Keeping in mind the multicultural ethos of J&K, the decision to go with India has proved to be the right one,” he observed.

Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed on Wednesday met Prime Minister Narendra Modi to discuss fast-tracking the development agenda of the PDP-BJP coalition government in the state.Addressing a party convention here, Sayeed said that the coalition government’s ‘Agenda of Alliance’ remains the binding force that will see a new phase of equitable development in the state. “I met Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi and discussed with him several important issues. He has assured me of Centre’s help in fast-tracking the development agenda of the coalition government,” he said. Elaborating on his meeting with Modi, Sayeed said the Prime Minister has a vision to speed up inclusive development in the state.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”The new think-tank of NITI Aayog has assured us of our share in the Central funds as per recommendations of the 14th Finance Commission Award. We will use optimal utilisation of these funds and ensure that every penny is spent,” he said.He referred to the kitty of Rs 6,000 crore allocated to Jammu and Kashmir under the centrally-sponsored schemes. Welcoming the new office bearers, Sayeed observed that all issues indicated in the ‘Agenda of Alliance’ mutually agreed to will be implemented and special focus will be given to return of Uri and Dul Hasti hydel power projects to the state.Highlighting Jammu and Kashmir’s unique position as the only Muslim majority state in the country, Sayeed said the people need to safeguard its special status, which is guaranteed by the Constitution of India. He recalled with satisfaction the farsightedness of the leaders of the state who decided to accede with India. “Keeping in mind the multicultural ethos of J&K, the decision to go with India has proved to be the right one,” he observed.Drawing the attention of party workers towards holding elections to local-self government institutions, Sayeed said he wants to make people at the grassroot level real partners in state’s development. Referring to the recent death of Zahid in Udhampur truck attack, the leader assured that those responsible for his death will not go unpunished under any circumstance. He said the Cabinet in one voice condemned the dastardly act and vowed to defeat the nefarious designs of the divisive forces which are out to damage the pluralistic fabric of the state.The convention was presided over by PDP president Mehbooba Mufti and attended by party ministers, MLAs and office bearers. However, party’s Lok Sabha members from Srinagar and Baramulla — Tariq Hamid Karra and Muzaffar Hussain Baig respectively — did not attend the meeting.

Hindu Sena workers smears J&K MLA Rashid Engineer’s face with black ink over ‘beef party’

J&K MLA Sheikh Abdul Rashid, popularly known as Engineer Rashid, with his face smeared in black paint and ink thrown by Hindu Sena activists.

Reuters
Growing face of intolerance by right-wing fringe elements came to the fore once again on Monday when Hindu Sena activists came rampaging inside the Press Club of India premises in the capital and attacked independent MLA from Kashmir Engineer Rashid by smearing his face with black paint and ink. They were protesting against his hosting a beef party in Srinagar earlier this month.The incident immediately invited sharp reaction from chief minister Mufti Mohammed Sayeed who is running a coalition government with BJP in J&K.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”In a vibrant democracy like India, we need to have courage to respect dissent and provide space to different points of view. The spate in unpleasant incidents such as this is most disturbing,” Sayeed said.Former CM Farooq Abdullah also said that PM Modi should look into who the perpetrators of this attack were.The incident happened when Rashid was emerging out of the Press Club after addressing a press conference to protest against the fatal attack on two Kashmiri truck drivers in Udhampur over rumours of killing a cow on October 9. One of the drivers, Zahid Rasool Bhat, 18, succumbed to burn injuries on Sunday at Delhi’s Safdarjung hospital igniting protests in Kashmir.Shouting “Gau Mata ki jai” a couple of unidentified men came rushing to Engineer Rashid when he was about to leave the Press Club. The independent MLA had received massive opposition for hosting a beef party in Srinagar earlier this month.”I do not eat beef, mutton, or chicken but that (the party) was a form of protest to tell the authorities not to interfere in anyone’s religion and eating habits,” Rashid had explained during the press conference.Addressing the media after the attack Rashid said, “It is not mine, but PM Modi’s face that has been blackened today…The world is watching where India, the land of Mahatma Gandhi stands today. These people (the attackers) are mentally sick. I want the whole world to see how these people are trying to muzzle the voice of Kashmiris.” he said.”Talibanisation is not just taking place in Pakistan. It is happening all over India too,” added an angry Rashid.During the press conference, Rashid attacked BJP and PM Modi for being silent against the growing violence by majority community and thus being partners in crime.”If the UP government can be held responsible for Dadri incident, then BJP is equally responsible for the Udhampur incident along with its ally PDP,” said Rashid demanding PM Modi to “publicly condemn” such attacks and “say sorry” for the loss of lives.”Are we living in Hindustan of Mohan Bhagwat or Sakshi Maharaj? The Prime Minister talks of Talibanisation and radicalisation. I have a strong hunch that Sakshi Maharaj is an ISI prop. The PM should carry out an investigation…. And what is this happening in Jammu and Kashmir? Nobody is speaking. I request you with folded hands to highlight the plight of Kashmiris,” Rashid told the media.The relatives of the two truck drivers alleged that Mufti Sayeed government was “threatening, abusing and warning” their family members from speaking to the media.They demanded stricter punishment to those behind the gruesome Udhampur attack.”The (alleged) kingpin of the attack ex-councilor Pralahad Singh is still at large. Why is he not being arrested? The irony is that he is holding demonstrations in Udhampur for release of other five who have been booked by police. We want that the attackers behind this incident should be hanged like Afzal Guru (2001 Parliament Attack convict),” Rashid said.

Ink, Mobil Oil thrown at J&K independent MLA Abdul Rashid for hosting beef party, 2 detained

Two weeks ago, Abdul Rashid was roughed up by BJP MLAs at Jammu and Kashmir assembly for hosting the beef party.

File Photo Courtesy: www.rajyasabha.tv

Jammu and Kashmir Independent MLA Abdul Rashid was attacked by Ink and mobil oil on Monday for hosting a beef party in Srinagar. Two people detained in the case and have been taken to Tughlak Road Police Station.Vishnu Gupta-led Hindu Sena has claimed the responsibility for the ink attack on Rashid. Vishnu Gupta was also the man behind ink attack on Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal in January 2014. Speaking to ANI, Rashid said, “What happened to Sudheendra Kulkarni has happened to me.” Two weeks ago, Abdul Rashid was roughed up by BJP MLAs at Jammu and Kashmir assembly for hosting the beef party. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Popularly known as ‘Engineer Rashid’, he was holding a press conference at Press Club in New Delhi along with relatives of the two truck drivers who were burnt by a mob at Udhampur in Jammu region on October nine. One of the victims–19-year-old Zahid– died at Safdurjung hospital on Sunday morning.As he finished his press conference, he was held at the gate of the Press Club by some TV journalists for a one-to-one interview 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 of the TV journalists as well as policemen also received colours on their faces as well as clothes while trying to save the MLA from the mob. The incident came after he had made comments at the press conference about the beef party organised by him inside the MLA hostel in Srinagar.”I do not eat beef, mutton, or chicken but that was a form of protest to tell the authorities that do not interfere in anyone’s religion,” Rashid had explained to reporters during the press conference when he was asked about him violating the sentiments of the people.The conference was called by him after the death of Zahid along with the relatives of the two truck drivers to demand that Prime Minister Narendra Modi should apologise for the Udhampur incident.”If the UP government can be held responsible for Dadri incident, then BJP is equally responsible for the Udhampur incident along with its ally PDP,” he said.The relatives of the two — Zahid and Showkat — who were sleeping in the truck when it was attacked by a mob with petrol bombs alleged that Mufti Sayeed Government was “threatening, abusing and warning” their family members from speaking to the media.”Mufti Sayeed will have to pay for this. Is this democracy that India boasts about. Its worst,” Mohammed Ashraf, kin of Zahid, said after his face was also blackened. Rashid hosted a beef party in Srinagar on October 7 in defiance of the High Court order directing implementation of provisions to ban beef and said that no courts or legislature can prevent the people from eating what they want. The legislator from Langate hosted the party in the lawns of MLA hostel, with the guests being served beef kebabs, ‘ristas’ (meat balls) and beef patties.Rashid claimed that he did not want to offend anyone but wanted to send a message that “no courts or legislature can prevent the people from eating what they want”.The beef row erupted after a division bench of High Court in Jammu directed the state to strictly implement the ban in the state as per the law. The order evoked strong resentment from various quarters with many separatist and religious organisations terming it as “interference in religious affairs” and sought revocation of the law, besides pressing for implementation of ban on liquor in the state. The issue is now before the Supreme Court.

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.

Jammu and kashmir CM Mufti Sayeed asks Centre to take steps to curb Dadri-like incidents

Sayeed said the BJP led NDA government at the Centre has got the mandate for providing good governance, transparency and inclusive development across the country.
File Photo
PTI
Taking a serious note of the Dadri lynching incident, J&K Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed on Wednesday asked the Centre to take steps for curbing such incidents as they “do not bode well for the country”.”The government which is ruling the country should take steps to check such incidents. These incidents are highly condemnable and everyone has condemned it,” he told reporters after addressing the PDP workers.Sayeed said the BJP led NDA government at the Centre has got the mandate for providing good governance, transparency and inclusive development across the country. He said at the time of partition, a large number of Muslims stayed back in India and made it their home as they saw their future here.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”According to 2011 Census, there are roughly 17 crore Muslims in India. They chose to make India their nation … those who went to the other side (Pakistan) went there … but they (Indian Muslims) contributed to the nation building despite grave provocations,” he said.Sayeed said India is a composite civilisation of “Ganga, Yamuna and Indus”.”If we are divided, we cannot progress on the path of inclusive development… if there is a loose end, it has to be tied. (Otherwise), it is not in India’s interest,” he added.The Chief Minister noted that there were apprehensions that the schemes for minorities including Muslims might be stopped if NDA came to power at the Centre.”However, the affirmative action has continued … students from Jammu and Kashmir alone get 5,000 scholarships to study in educational institutions of the country,” he said.50-year-old Mohammed Iqlakh was beaten to death by a 200-strong mob on a street near Dadri in Uttar Pradesh last week over rumours of eating beef, while his 20-year-old son Danish was severely injured in the attack.Talking about the PDP-BJP coalition state government, Sayeed said his government took over the reins in a challenging situation.”We have worked very hard to put the state back on the tracks … works of few ministers like Altaf Bukhari ((roads and buildings) and Lal Singh (Health) is visible but everyone is working silently to improve the situation,” he said.Sayeed said he has been a strong votary for dialogue and was ready for “battle of ideas” with those not pursuing the path of violence.”I believe in boli (dialogue) and not goli (bullet) for resolving issues. Look what happened in Syria and Iraq, two symbols of Islamic civilisation. We are pained to see these places today,” he added.

CM Mufti Sayeed condoles death of two Jammu & Kashmir pilgrims in Hajj stampede

In his condolence message, Sayeed expressed solidarity with the bereaved families and prayed for eternal peace to the departed souls.
File Photo
PTI
Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed on Tuesday condoled the death of two pilgrims from the state in the Hajj stampede last week.On Sunday, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj had put the death toll in the Hajj stampede in Mina at 1090, much higher than the figure of 769 given by Saudi authorities. Those killed in the stampede included 45 Indians.In his condolence message, Sayeed expressed solidarity with the bereaved families and prayed for eternal peace to the departed souls.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Chief Minister, who also heads the State Hajj Committee, offered condolences to the family members of all those Hajjis who lost their lives in the tragic stampede at Mina last week.”My heart goes out to those who lost their near and dear ones in the tragic stampede at Mina. I pray to Almighty Allah to rest departed souls in peace,” he said.The Chief Minister also prayed for speedy recovery of those pilgrims from J-K, who were injured in the unfortunate incident. The Chief Minister directed the State Hajj Committee to coordinate with the concerned authorities for providing best possible medical treatment to the injured Hajjis for their speedy recovery.According to Hajj Committee of India, two Hajjis have died in the Mina stampede from the state, who have been identified as Abdul Salam Dar (JKR-9416-2-0), resident of HMT Road, Zainakote area of Srinagar and Mehraj-ud-din Ganai (JKR 6955-2-0), resident of Patlipora Bala, Chatabal, Srinagar.

Mecca stampede: Mufti Sayeed and Omar Abdullah express grief over loss of lives

In his condolence message, the Chief Minister expressed solidarity with the bereaved families in their hour of grief and prayed for peace to the departed souls.

Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed on Thursday expressed profound grief over the tragedy in Mecca which left over 450 pilgrims dead and several hundred others injured.In his condolence message, the Chief Minister expressed solidarity with the bereaved families in their hour of grief and prayed for peace to the departed souls. He also wished speedy recovery to all those Hajjis who sustained injuries in the stampede at Mina, outside the holy city of Mecca, where millions perform the annual Hajj pilgrimage.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Sayeed also prayed for safety and security of Hajj pilgrims from Jammu and Kashmir, who are in Saudi Arabia and directed the State Hajj Committee to keep their relatives informed about their safety and well being in the Holy Land.Former chief minister Omar Abdullah also said the news of the stampede was tragic.Congress’ state unit president Ghulam Ahmad Mir termed the incident as most “unfortunate”.”This incident has disturbed and dismayed me enough. I offer my condolences to the bereaved families and sympathise with them. I also pray for eternal peace to the departed souls,” he said.At least 453 people were killed and 730 others, including two Indians, injured on Thursday in a stampede during the Haj at Mina, near the holy city of Mecca in Saudi Arabia, the worst incident in nearly a decade to hit the annual pilgrimage that reached its climax.The tragedy occurred due to a sudden rush of the pilgrims on Street 204 in Mina where they perform a symbolic stoning of the devil by throwing pebbles against three stone walls. Over two million pilgrims, including more than 1.5 lakh Indians, are performing the Haj this year.

Mufti Mohamed Sayeed for dewatering of water-logged areas in Kashmir

He also called for immediate dewatering of Eidgahs and other open areas where congregational Eid prayers are to be offered on Eid-ul-Azha

CM Mufti said concerned agencies should work in close coordination to ensure that people do not suffer any inconvenience because of water-logging

With overnight rains lashing wide parts of Jammu and Kashmir, Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed on Tuesday ordered immediate dewatering of water-logged roads and residential areas in the valley.The Chief Minister asked the Roads and Buildings Department, the Irrigation and Flood Control Department, the Mechanical Engineering Department, UEED and Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC) to immediately press into services the requisite men and machinery to ensure speedy dewatering of water-logged areas so that there is no disruption of traffic and public movement, an official spokesman said here.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Sayeed asked the Irrigation and Flood Control Department to ensure round the clock vigil along the embankments of rivers and streams especially in the low-lying and vulnerable areas. Preventive measures should be taken in advance to ensure safety of life and property, the Chief Minister said. Sayeed said there should be no disruption of traffic movement due to water-logging of roads and the concerned authorities must ensure that the inter and intra-state traffic moves normally.He also called for immediate dewatering of Eidgahs and other open areas where congregational Eid prayers are to be offered on Eid-ul-Azha. The Chief Minister said all the concerned agencies should work in close coordination to ensure that people do not suffer any inconvenience because of water-logging and other related issues. Widespread rains lashed many parts of Kashmir today with Srinagar receiving 48 mm of rainfall during the day.High altitude areas also received light to moderate snowfall since last night. The MeT Office has predicted scattered rainfall in the Valley over the next 48 hours.

Mufti sabotaged NSA-level talks with Pakistan, says Omar Abdullah

Omar said when Sayeed did not allow Hurriyat leaders to talk to Pakistan High Commissioner in New Delhi, how would he facilitate their dialogue with the Centre as mentioned in the Common Minimum Programme (CMP) of BJP-PDP coalition.
File Photo
dna Research & Archives
Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on Tuesday accused his successor Mufti Mohammad Sayeed of sabotaging the NSA-level talks between India and Pakistan, saying he prevented Hurriyat leaders from meeting Pakistan High Commissioner by arresting them.”Now he (Sayeed) says that NSA talks should have been held. Jenab, if anyone sabotaged those talks, it is you (Sayeed) when you arrested these (Hurriyat) leaders,” Omar said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Omar, the working president of National Conference (NC), was speaking to the reporters on the sidelines of a function to mark the 33rd death anniversary of his grandfather and party founder Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah at Hazratbal. He said when Sayeed did not allow Hurriyat leaders to talk to Pakistan High Commissioner in New Delhi, how would he facilitate their dialogue with the Centre as mentioned in the Common Minimum Programme (CMP) of BJP-PDP coalition.”Where has that Mufti gone, who used to say that this is the battle of ideas? Those people, with whom his thinking does not match, are arrested. You said in your agenda for alliance (CMP) that you will facilitate dialogue between the Centre and the Hurriyat. (But) when you did not permit Hurriyat to talk to Pakistan in Delhi, how would you let them talk to the Centre. Even if I or Farooq (Abdullah) sahab have lakhs of shortcomings, but never were Hurriyat leaders arrested to prevent them from meeting Pakistani leaders in the 12 years that we (Abdullah and me) ruled the state,” he said.Omar however, also said Pakistan was deliberately creating obstacles in the way of dialogue.”The atmosphere which is being created is not a good thing. A threat after threat is given. Rather than creating a good atmosphere, they are talking of making the situation worse. The NSA talks did not happen. Now, the DGMO talks are in danger.”We are hearing that Pakistan wants the UN to monitor ceasefire. They know that such a thing will never be acceptable to India. So, you are deliberately creating obstacles in the way of dialogue. What benefit does it serve?” Omar said. He said both India and Pakistan should stop their guns on the borders and resolve the issues through dialogue.”They should stop their guns on both the sides and issuing these threats should be stopped, then there will be some betterment in the situation and we will make a forward movement on talks. We all know that there is no solution to this issue than talks. If a solution would have happened due to gun, then we have been facing the gun for the 25 years but we aren’t anywhere near a solution. India and Pakistan have fought three-and-a-half wars, the issue has not been resolved,” he said. He said it was the responsibility of both the countries to create a conducive atmosphere for talks.”If it (issue) has to be resolved, it is through talks only and it is the responsibility of both India and Pakistan to create a conducive atmosphere for talks,” he said.

Brij Raj Sharma appointed as Jammu-Kashmir Chief Secretary

The appointment of a new Chief Secretary was required after Sharma’s predecessor Mohammad Iqbal Khandey sought voluntary retirement from service last month citing differences with the government.

Sharma was the Chief Election Officer of the state during the 2008 Assembly elections, which were held immediately after the Amarnath Land row agitation in the state (Mufti Mohammad Sayeed: File Photo)

Jammu and Kashmir government on Monday appointed Brij Raj Sharma, a 1984 batch IAS officer, as the Chief Secretary, superseding four senior officers. “The Cabinet which met here under the chairmanship of Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed today approved the appointment of B R Sharma as the Chief Secretary,” an official spokesperson said. Born on April 27, 1960, Sharma will have one of the longest tenures as the Chief Secretary of the state if he continues in the office till his superannuation.The appointment of a new Chief Secretary was required after Sharma’s predecessor Mohammad Iqbal Khandey sought voluntary retirement from service last month citing differences with the government over frequent transfer of senior officers. Sharma has been appointed to the top administrative post, superseding four senior officers, Arun Kumar and his wife Sonali Kumar, both 1979 batch IAS officers, A K Angurana (1980 batch) and Khursheed Ahmad Ganai (1982 batch).<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Sharma, who has two post-graduate degrees besides an LLB degree, has held several key posts in the government during his 31 years of service. His last posting was as Principal Secretary, Planning and Development Department of Jammu and Kashmir. He has also held the post of Principal Secretary of the Home Department. Sharma was the Chief Election Officer of the state during the 2008 Assembly elections, which were held immediately after the Amarnath Land row agitation in the state.

Friendship between India and Pakistan imperative for peace: Mehbooba Mufti

Mehbooba inquired the locals of the damages caused due to recent ceasefire violations from across the border.

Peace is imperative towards giving employment to the people of the state: Mufti

PDP president Mehbooba Mufti on Thursday took stock of the damages caused by ceasefire violations in RS Pura area and said that friendship between India and Pakistan is ‘necessary’ for the civilians living peacefully along the international borders. Mehbooba Mufti toured various villages in RS Pura, along the international border, and inquired the locals of the damages caused due to recent ceasefire violations from across the border.”He (Prime Minister Narendra Modi) should follow the policy of Atal Behari Vajpayee and should tell them that they want peace and friendship with Pakistan,” she said. Peace is imperative towards giving employment to the people of the state, Mufti said. “We also feel that war should not happen as it would lead to destruction. So let us come and adopt a path to reconciliation and friendship,” she said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”The contradiction as when India and Pakistan were trading bombs in RS Pura, Pakistan was sending onions to India from Wagah border in Punjab and we were sending them rupees from India. If you can get onions from Pakistan and send them money, why cannot you make arrangement that bullets are not exchanged from this place,” Mufti said. “We do not have money for roads; we do not have money for hospitals. Pakistan’s situation is even worse than ours.”People there are also poor, but we are ready to spend money on bombarding one another,” she said. PDP President said that her father’s, Mufti Mohammed Sayeed, agenda is to make Jammu and Kashmir a peaceful state where people can live and work in peace.

Top most babu decides to step down over differences with Mufti government

An IAS officer of 1978 batch, Khandey was made the chief secretary of Jammu and Kashmir on February 18, 2013 during the National Conference-Congress government led by Omar Abdullah. He was scheduled to retire in November this year.

Mufti Mohammad Sayeed PDP-BJP government has suffered a major embarrassment after its top most bureaucrat and chief secretary Muhammad Iqbal Khandey decided to step down following differences with the the ruling establishment.An IAS officer of 1978 batch, Khandey was made the chief secretary of Jammu and Kashmir on February 18, 2013 during the National Conference-Congress government led by Omar Abdullah. He was scheduled to retire in November this year.Khandey was apparently not happy the way the ministers were taking decisions and tossing the officers at will. Sources said even the junior officers were promoted and superseded without any logic.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”Some officers were transferred even before they could settle down in their respective postings. No procedure was followed and no logic was given for transfers of officers intermittently. Even the chief secretary was not being taken into loop”, said an insider. Khandey was also not apparently happy with some of the decisions regarding the financial matters. Sources said he was not consulted on these matters which was also the reason that he decided to step down. “Some of the ministers were not gelling with him well. He is a tough task master who always goes by the book. He believes in transparency and will not succumb to any pressure. Therefore he decided to step down”, said a senior bureaucrat. Khandey, who was acquitted in the infamous Srinagar sex scandal by the CBI court in Chandigarh, has been Mufti’s principal secretary in his first stint as J&K chief minister from 2002-05. Khandey’s daughter Sehar Iqbal unsuccessfully contested 2008 Assembly election on Mehbooba Mufti led People Democratic Party (PDP) ticket from Kokernag. She however lost to the Congress leader Peerzada Mohammad Sayeed.

23 years later, Sopore Bypass Bridge finally inaugurated

Describing Sopore as a historic town, the CM said the place is bestowed with great intellectual and entrepreneurial potential, which remained subdued over the last two decades.

CM Mufti Mohammad Sayeed said that the opening of the Sopore Bypass Bridge comes as a major relief to the people as it will de-congest the main Sopore town and rid it from frequent traffic jams.

Image courtesy: Team iamin
Two-decade long wait for Sopore Bypass Bridge finally came to end on Monday when CM Mufti Mohammad Sayeed inaugurated the 216-metre long bridge after its construction started 23 years ago.CM, on the occasion, asserted that he has fulfilled his promise that he had made with the people during his last visit to apple town on July 23. “I had given my word last month and today I have fulfilled my promise,” Mufti said adding that he had directed Border Roads Organization (BRO) to get the bridge ready by August.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Describing Sopore as a historic town, the CM said the place is bestowed with great intellectual and entrepreneurial potential, which remained subdued over the last two decades. He said the town has had an important place in the socio-cultural milieu of the valley and elders would still remember it being called as the Chota London of Kashmir.Meanwhile, the Mufti government claims that the bridge will facilitate the people of Sopore in many ways.“It will annihilate distances”CM said that the opening of the Sopore Bypass Bridge comes as a major relief to the people as it will de-congest the main Sopore town and rid it from frequent traffic jams. “The bridge will facilitate movement of heavy vehicles away from the town and connect Sopore outskirts with Kupwara and Baramulla,” he mentioned.“It will boost economy by helping fruit growers”MLA Syed Basharat Bukhari, in his address, said the new bypass bridge would not only connect people of North Kashmir with the rest of the state, but also provide a lifeline to the economic activities of the region, in particular the export-oriented fruit business.Asserting that the new bridge will benefit nearly 1.5 lakh growers and traders in the apple town, Syed Altaf Bukhari said the government has already started work to improve all major roads to provide better connectivity to the people. He made specific reference of road projects like Sopore-Ladoora, Higam-Tarzua, and Fakir Bagh-Sultanpora and added that these would be taken in hand shortly.Praising Public Works, BRO and the district administration for speeding up construction of the remaining 30 per cent work on the bridge, which coincides with the beginning of the apple season when fruit-laded trucks move to markets outside the state, Mufti shared, “I want to see Sopore come up as a premier fruit marketing hub for which it needs better roads and a fully-equipped fruit mandi,” he said and added that his government has already started working on it in a mission mode.Interestingly, locals all this while, had constructed their own set of mythsThe construction work for the bridge was started by Border Roads Organisation in 1992 at the time when Rajiv Gandhi was the prime minister of the country.While the bridge was being constructed in last 23 years, it also prompted locals to create theories and myths to justify the undue delay in construction process. “Some believed that Indian government was trying to evade a war with the neighbour country by delaying construction, others believed that construction was not getting completed due to supernatural powers,” shares Naveed Khan, a local, and adds, “None of these theories have any basis though.” Several locals were of the view that a war would break out between India and Pakistant once construction of bridge is completed. Some Soporeans also share the association of myths with construction of bridges has had a long history in Kashmir.

Mobile phone, internet services snapped across Kashmir on Independence Day

Mobile phones and internet services on mobile devices were snapped at about 8 AM as people started assembling at Bakshi Stadium, the main venue for the Independence Day celebrations in Jammu and Kashmir.

Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammed Sayeed, in his Independence Day address at Bakshi Stadium in Srinagar, said the state had rejected the two-nation theory propounded by Pakistan founder Mohammad Ali Jinnah.

PTI photo
Independence day functions were held across Kashmir amidst heightened security even as mobile phones and mobile internet services were snapped on Saturday as a precautionary measure, in wake of the recent spurt in militant activities in the Valley. Mobile phones and internet services on mobile devices were snapped at about 8 AM as people started assembling at Bakshi Stadium, the main venue for the Independence Day celebrations in Jammu and Kashmir. The services were resumed at 12 PM, minutes after the official function at the stadium ended.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In a departure from decade-old practice, the authorities had allowed uninterrupted mobile services on the Republic Day earlier this year. However, the practice could not be repeated today in view of increase in militant attacks in Kashmir ahead of the Independence day.”The increase in militant attacks especially in the run up to the celebrations on Wednesday and Thursday demanded extra vigil,” a police officer said. At least 15 persons, including five security personnel, were injured in three grenade attacks and a firing incident in the Valley on Wednesday and Thursday.Snapping of mobile phone and mobile internet services were added to the security drill in 2005 after militants detonated a bomb using a cell phone near Bakshi Stadium on Independence Day that year. Meanwhile, heightened security measures were put in place to ensure incident-free Independence functions across the Valley. Police and paramilitary personnel were deployed in strength across the city and other vulnerable areas in the Valley, the police officer said. Sharp shooters were deployed on high rise buildings around Bakshi stadium, where Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed unfurled the national flag and took salute at the march past, he said. He said all the functions in the Valley passed off peacefully.Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammed Sayeed, in his Independence Day address at Bakshi Stadium in Srinagar, said the state had rejected the two-nation theory propounded by Pakistan founder Mohammad Ali Jinnah. He said Jammu and Kashmir should “get the (special) status and identity within the Constitution of the country” on which the state and the leadership of that time decided to join hands with India.

Jammu & Kashmir’s special status should be maintained: Mufti Mohammad Sayeed

“I want to say that the two-nation theory of Mohammad Ali Jinnah was not adopted by the people of Jammu and Kashmir even before Independence. We had our own stand which was reflected in the 1938 convention at Sopore in which Muslim Conference was converted into National Conference,” he said.

Jammu & Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed on Saturday asserted that the special status granted to Jammu and Kashmir in the constitution of India should be maintained.”There were some phases in Jammu and Kashmir which should not have happened. Mufti Mohammad Sayeed and PDP support the conditions on which the state and the leadership of that time decided to join hands with India.”Be it PDP, National Conference, Congress or other regional outfits, they want that Jammu and Kashmir should get the (special) status and identity within the Constitution of the country,” Sayeed said in his Independence Day address at Bakshi Stadium here.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Chief Minister pointed out that the people of the state had refused to accept the two-nation theory propounded by Pakistan founder Mohammad Ali Jinnah and went with the “big country” India in 1947.”I want to say that the two-nation theory of Mohammad Ali Jinnah was not adopted by the people of Jammu and Kashmir even before Independence. We had our own stand which was reflected in the 1938 convention at Sopore in which Muslim Conference was converted into National Conference,” he said.The Chief Minister said during the struggle for Independence, Congress and Muslim League had separate visions but the leadership and people of Jammu and Kashmir had their own stand on the post-independence scenario.”The Congress leadership stood shoulder to shoulder in our freedom struggle against the aristocracy and imperialist forces. Resultantly, the people of the state and its leadership decided to go with the bigger country India in 1947,” he said.Sayeed also made a note of Pakistan’s “fight for political existence”, even as India treads the path of prosperity over the past 70 years.”Today we can see how democracy is flourishing in India for the past 70 years, how Indian economy is growing and how the institutions are functioning.”There is no doubt that Pakistan is our neighbouring country but they are still fighting a battle for their political existence,” he said.The Chief Minister also recalled the role played by opposition National Conference founder Shiekh Mohammad Abdullah in putting the state on the track of development.”In 1975, late Shiekh Mohammad Abdullah, accepting the ground reality, again took the reigns of the state to put it on the track of development like rest of the country,” he said.Underlining his biggest achievement as Chief Minister, Sayeed highlighted the opening of routes across Line of Control for travel and trade between 2002 and 2008.”But we want this initiative not to remain limited to divided families and be extended for other purposes like pilgrim tourism as well,” he said.

Farooq Abdullah asks Centre to engage dialogue with Pakistan to stop ceasefire violations

The former Union minister complimented border dwellers for facing the challenge with fortitude and said NC was with them at this hour of crisis.
File Photo
dna Research & Archives
National Conference chief Farooq Abdullah on Saturday asked the Centre to engage Pakistan in a meaningful dialogue to end ceasefire violations, while he emphasised that people in border areas of Jammu and Kashmir were living under perpetual threat.”Peace would remain a distant dream unless Pakistan Army is taken on board in peace process,” Abdullah said while addressing a public meeting in Surankote, close to Line of Control, this morning, observing that the neighbouring country had multiple power centres. He wondered whether any serious effort is being made by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to prevail upon Islamabad, as the ground situation on borders continued to be grim.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The people are suffering and the normal activity has come to a grinding halt in the border habitations, he said while referring to spurt in ceasefire violations in recent days. He also criticised the state government for showing “insensitivity and callousness” while dealing with the situation in the forward areas.”What a tragedy, the government has turned so callous that even the injured keep waiting for being shifted to hospitals,” he alleged.The former Union minister complimented border dwellers for facing the challenge with fortitude and said NC was with them at this hour of crisis.”Border skirmishes were not going to solve problems, but instead these will further compound the situation and limit scope for peace in the region,” he said.The former JK chief minister said, “Ultimately, the end receivers of hostilities between India and Pakistan remain the people of this state.””Weakening of the special status of Jammu and Kashmir from time to time has generated mistrust among the people,” he claimed while tracing back its genesis to the era of Bakshi Ghulam Mohammad and Ghulam Mohammed Sadiq. He alleged that “opportunistic” politicians remained instrumental in “hollowing” Article 370 and extension of central laws. In this context, he referred to the role played by Mufti Mohammed Sayeed in his various capacities.”Mufti Mohammed Sayeed is architect of AFSPA,” Abdullah alleged, adding that he has all along been pro-active in “usurping the rights of people and trampling democracy in the state”.”Today, Sayeed-led government is polarising the administration and creating a wedge on the basis of religion and region,” he alleged.Taking a jibe at the PDP, he said the people are fed up with hollow promises.”Where is the huge central package, which the coalition was yelling from roof-tops,” he asked, saying the flood sufferers across the state have been virtually left in lurch.Abdullah said Rajouri and Poonch belt has huge potential to grow on tourist map which will give boost to its economy. In this context, he referred to Mughal Road and said this will prove to be the highway of progress and development for the area.”What a coincidence, Omar Abdullah was the first to drive on Mughal Road conceived by Sher-e-Kashmir Sheikh Mohammed Abdullah,” he said and gave the background of its constructions while mentioning “obstacles” created by vested interests.

BJP’s track record in dealing with terrorism is poor: Congress

Responding to Union Minister Arun Jaitley’s charge that Congress was being “irresponsible” by not allowing Home Minister Rajnath Singh make a statement in Rajya Sabha on the terror attack.
File Photo
dna Research & Archives
Slammed by BJP for obstructing Union Home Minister from making statement in Rajya Sabha on Gurdaspur terror attack, Congress shot back on Thursday and said BJP should refrain from delivering sermons on the sensitive issue as its track record in dealing with terrorism was “poor”.Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala also distanced the party from the remarks of senior leader Digvijay Singh who had hoped that the “exemplary urgency and commitment” shown by the “government and judiciary” in Yakub Memon case will also be displayed in all cases of terror, irrespective of the religion of the accused.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Responding to Union Minister Arun Jaitley’s charge that Congress was being “irresponsible” by not allowing Home Minister Rajnath Singh make a statement in Rajya Sabha on the terror attack, Surjewala said instead of delivering sermons, the government should work on brining back principal perpetrators of Mumbai blasts Dawood Ibrahim and Tiger Memon and ensuring strongest of punishment to them.”May I requestfully tell the BJP government as also their leaders to not give sermons to Congress party or the country considering BJP’s own poor track record in dealing with terrorism… BJP’s track record has been far from good in tackling terrorism. The last time BJP was in power, its foreign minister led terrorists like Maulana Masood Azhar and other and left them in Kandhar, Afghanistan,” he told reporters here.He also said that V P Singh government, of which BJP was also a part, exchanged terrorists in lieu of Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammed Sayeed’s daughter Rubia Sayeed.”When BJP was in power last time, former Prime Minister, whom we respect, Atal Bihar Vajpayee, had gone on a bus yatra to Pakistan while Pakistani army occupied Kargil. It took sacrifice of nearly 1,000 of our soldiers that we could get our land back. BJP, instead of linking terror and every incident of terror to religion, caste or region, would be well adviced to take care of the national security, which is under question post Prime Minister’s Ufa visit and patting himself on his back. After that the infiltration incidents have gone up many fold,” he said.He said terrorism has returned to Punjab under BJP’s rule.

Over 800 doctors, 4,000 para-medics to be appointed in Jammu & Kashmir

The information was given to Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed by Secretary Health Department M K Bhandari during the former’s visit to Kashmir University’s South Campus in Anantnag yesterday.

Jammu and Kashmir government will appoint over 800 doctors and 4,000 para-medics within next four months, besides setting a medical college in Kashmir Valley’s Anantnag district.”As many as 845 vacancies of doctors and 4,000 vacancies of para-medics in the state will be filled up over the next four months on a fast-track basis,” an official spokesman said here.The information was given to Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed by Secretary Health Department M K Bhandari during the former’s visit to Kashmir University’s South Campus in Anantnag yesterday.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Bhandari informed the Chief Minister that land has been identified for setting up of new medical college at Anantnag and the indent placed before the authorities concerned.”We will be able to source funding after the Cabinet grants approval to change in the land use,” the official said.Bhandari said the Anantnag District Hospital is fully equipped in terms of logistics and manpower and it will match the facilities extended in any district hospital in the state.The Chief Minister directed the Health Department to complete modalities for taking over of Rehmat-e-Alam Hospital Trust at Anantnag so that it can be developed as a 50-bed hospital, which will ease pressure on the new 110-bed hospital.Sayeed also asked the Health Department to make the Trauma Hospital at Bijbehara fully operational.The chief minister also issued directions for preparing a ‘Concept Plan’ for establishing colleges of skill development, physiotherapy-cum rehabilitation, nursing training and emergency medical services at the South Campus.”The University should coordinate with Health and Medical Education (H&ME) Department and prepare a Concept Plan so that new courses are started at an earliest,” Sayeed said while directing Vice Chancellor Khursheed Andrabi to make South Campus an advanced centre of higher education.The CM was briefed that around 400 students are undergoing studies in South Campus for which 24 senior faculty members have been permanently positioned.

Uddhav Thackeray attacks BJP; questions raising of Pakistani flag in Kashmir

“Every morning when we open a newspaper, we keep reading the same news that once bored us…The thought which comes to our mind is that we used to read the same news before. Be it farmers’ suicide, protests of the unemployed people, crimes against women,” he said.

Shiv Sena President Uddhav Thackeray today took a dig at its ally and said that ground realities have remained unchanged despite BJP coming to power at the Centre, promising ‘Acche Din’.”Even 50 years are not enough to clean up the mess created by the erstwhile government. But a lot has to be done in the next five years to fulfill the aspirations of people. You (the BJP) had promised ‘Acche Din’ to people and thus cannot cheat them now,” Thackeray said in an interview in party mouthpiece ‘Saamana’.To a question, Thackeray said that even though the governments have changed at the Centre and in the state, nothing much has changed on “ground”.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”Every morning when we open a newspaper, we keep reading the same news that once bored us…The thought which comes to our mind is that we used to read the same news before. Be it farmers’ suicide, protests of the unemployed people, crimes against women,” he said.When asked to comment on Pakistani flags being raised in Kashmir, Thackeray said, “Haven’t seen it happen in a long time.”Replying to another query, he questioned the change the BJP has brought after allying with the PDP in Jammu and Kashmir. “What can I do? It is surprising. I do not have personal enmity with anyone but what stand did you (BJP) have on Mufti Mohammed Sayeed before (election)? How can you forget his style of politics ? If Kashmir progresses, it is good. But bringing in a change does not mean giving the state a big financial package. People there should be turned back towards India,” Thackeray said.The Sena chief also reiterated his stand on freeing farmers from their debts and said they should be financially sound so that they can take new debts if they wish to, in future.

Any cross-border infiltrations will be dealt with, assures Lt General KH Singh

On Wednesday, Union Minister Rajnath Singh had held a review meeting on security provisions for the yatra. Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammed Sayeed had also reviewed the arrangements made for the pilgrims in the state’s Baltal area.

Image Courtesy: ANI
General Officer Commanding of Nagrota-based 16 Corps, Lieutenant General KH Singh on Saturday warned that militants are trying to cross the Line of Control (LoC) to create problems during the Amarnath Yatra, and assured that any such intentions of infiltration will be dealt with. “We are aware that militants are trying to cross the border to create problems during the Amarnath Yatra. Let me assure you that their intentions of infiltration or trying to create trouble will be dealt with. There are approximately 36 launch pads and the training camps are also acting. We are trying to carry out more people friendly operations,” said Lt Gen Singh.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> “According to our inputs, ISIS has not yet taken off on the other side in PoK, but they are trying to gain a foothold. They are trying to re-energize their activities,” he added. On Wednesday, Union Minister Rajnath Singh had held a review meeting on security provisions for the yatra. Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammed Sayeed had also reviewed the arrangements made for the pilgrims in the state’s Baltal area. Elaborate security arrangements have been made to ensure a safe and secure yatra for the pilgrims. This year’s Amarnath Yatra will commence from today and end on August 29. The registration for this year’s Yatra, via selected bank branches, began in March.

Over 600 mobile towers restored in Kashmir

Sopore, a police district, was the worst-hit area where all but two of the 177 towers were shut down in the wake of a series of attacks by militants that led to death of two persons and injuries to three others.

A series of attacks by militants in Kashmir led to death of two persons and injuries to three others in the last week.
File Photo
AFP photo
Authorities have restored over 600 of the 1,058 mobile transmission towers affected by the recent militant attacks and threats in Kashmir while efforts are on to make the rest functional soon, sources said today.Out of 2,903 towers of various telecom companies installed across Kashmir Valley, 1,058 towers had been shut down due to attacks and threats by militants to landlords in whose premises the equipment was installed, according to highly placed police sources.Police, with the assistance of the telecom companies, has made 609 mobile transmission towers functional within a short span, they said, a day after Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed directed the police to provide security to mobile towers and those managing them, saying people cannot be pushed into stone age.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Sopore, a police district, was the worst-hit area where all but two of the 177 towers were shut down in the wake of a series of attacks by militants that led to death of two persons and injuries to three others.The sources said police has been able to restore 59 towers — mostly hub sites and those located close to security forces camps and police stations.In Baramulla district, excluding Sopore, 110 of the 185 affected towers have been restored while in Srinagar — the summer capital of the state — 91 of the 141 affected towers have been restored.Srinagar has a tower strength of 714.Anantnag district in south Kashmir and Kupwara, barring Handwara police district, in north were unaffected by the crisis.None of the 485 towers in these two districts were affected by the militant activities in the district and have been functional.Out of 123 towers in Pulwama district, 101 towers were affected by the militant threats while more than 50 per cent of the 140 towers were shutdown in Awantipora police district, the sources said.Sayeed held a meeting on Tuesday with senior civil and police officers to discuss the situation arising out of a series of attacks by militants targeting telecom facilities across Kashmir over the last few days.He took strong note of the disruption of cellular networks in various parts of the Valley, saying mobile and internet services have become integral to modern-day functioning in government and others sectors.Political parties had condemned the attacks with former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah questioning why Sayeed had failed to “reassure” the people in the Valley.

Kashmiri Pandits stage protest over issue of return to Valley

Kashmiri Pandits on Sunday staged a protest here demanding that the state and the Centre take the community members into confidence before any decision on their return to the Valley and also pressed for setting up a commission to probe the “genocide” which led to their exodus.

Kashmiri Pandits on Sunday staged a protest here demanding that the state and the Centre take the community members into confidence before any decision on their return to the Valley and also pressed for setting up a commission to probe the “genocide” which led to their exodus.Members of the community, who converged in large numbers at Jantar Mantar here, demanded that Jammu and Kashmir government reopen prosecution cases against all those involved in the killing of Kashmiri pandits in the Valley following the outbreak of militancy.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Many of the protesters, who were wearing black T-shirts and bands, shouted slogans against Hurriyat Conference and separatist leaders.The general secretary of Jammu Kashmir Vichar Manch, Manoj Bhan, said, “Whatever decision the Centre or the state government takes, they must talk to the Kashmiri Pandits first. No separatist should be allowed to intervene in matters relating to Kashmiri Pandits.”They also called for setting up of a commission of inquiry to pin-point responsibility on perpetrators of “genocide” against them.Disapproving of comments made earlier by Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed that only 10 to 15% Kashmiri Pandits will choose to return to the Valley as most are well placed in various parts of the country, Bhan said that every member of the community wants to return to their homeland.CBFC board member Ashoke Pandit, who had flown in from Mumbai to participate in the protest, said that the Centre believing the words of Sayeed was the biggest problem for Kashmiri Pandits.”When I see all the terrorists on the streets of Kashmir, then what is the difference between the previous and this central government. The biggest problem is that the central government is trusting the Chief Minister….who says he is thankful to Pakistan after the peaceful elections,” Pandit said.He also demanded that Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Yasin Malik and other separatist leaders be arrested.Some of the placards carried by protesters also demanded that Article 370 which gives special status to Jammu and Kashmir be abolished.Another protester, Pankaj Dhar, said that members want to go to their homeland but on their terms and authorities must ensure social and political security of those who return.

Jammu & Kashmir CM Mufti Sayeed praises Modi, says bringing change is ‘long race’

Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed on Saturday said Prime Minister Narendra Modi had introduced a transparency model devoid of red-tapism since coming to power at the Centre.

PTI
Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed on Saturday said Prime Minister Narendra Modi had introduced a transparency model devoid of red-tapism since coming to power at the Centre.He also said people were waiting for ‘Sabka Sath Sabka Vikas’, Modi’s famous slogan, to translate into reality, but it was going to be a “long race”. “Narendra Modi made Gujarat a model. I have sent my bureaucrats here to see the systems in panchayats. The system will work when it is transparent, corruption-free and if there is no red-tapism in it. System works with single-window system,” said Sayeed in Ahmedabad, who is on a visit to the state.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”But India is a big country. There are so many people here; diversity is the essence of India. Unity in diversity. People here have elected him for three or four times (as Gujarat CM)…Modi gave the slogan ‘Sabka Sath, Sabka Vikas’ (support to all, development of all). People are waiting for it. Where has it gone? They do not know this is a long race,” he said.”If you want to set up an industry, it also takes three to four years. Same is the case with a power project,” he said, suggesting that bringing about development for all too would take some time. “There is no red-tape, transparency is everywhere. Such a model has come up before this country,” he said, commenting on Modi’s performance as the Prime Minister.On the PDP-BJP coalition government in Jammu and Kashmir led by him, Sayeed said, “I call this…as if North pole and South pole have met each other.” Sayeed was accompanied by the Jammu and Kashmir Finance Minister Haseeb A Drabu, Minister of State for Education Priya Sethi and some senior officials.

Mufti Mohammad Sayeed promises to ensure conducive conditions for return of Kashmiri Pandits

Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammed Sayeed on Saturday asserted that Kashmiri Pandits are a part of collective culture of the state, adding that his government would ensure that the conditions are conducive for their return.

Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammed Sayeed on Saturday asserted that Kashmiri Pandits are a part of collective culture of the state, adding that his government would ensure that the conditions are conducive for their return. “Kashmiri Pandits are part of culture, our collective culture. They are very learned people. It has been 25 years since 1990, and we still haven’t been able to bring them back. Our collective culture won’t be complete till they come back. They are highly placed, they are intellectuals; many are doctors, engineers and in the corporate sector. We will ensure that atmosphere is suitable for their return,” Mufti Sayeed told mediapersons.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> Earlier Thursday, Pakistan Ministry of Foreign Affairs official spokesperson Tasneem Aslam had stated that creation of special townships for Kashmiri Pandits in Jammu and Kashmir would violate the resolutions of the United Nations Security Council. Last month, Kashmiri separatists had called for a shutdown across the Valley over the issue of creation of special townships aimed at resettlement of Kashmiri Pandits.

Hoisting of Pak flags: CM Mufti Sayeed promises action against Geelani

At Friday’s rally, the first by him at militancy-hit Tral in south Kashmir, Geelani’s had demanded restricting the Amarnath Yatra to 30 days keeping in mind the safety of pilgrims and protection of environment. His supporters had chanted pro-Pakistan slogans and waved that country’s national flag. The Mufti insisted that the yatra will be held as scheduled as “people of Jammu and Kashmir are in its favour.

PTI
Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammed Sayeed on Saturday promised action against those responsible for waving Pakistani flags at Friday’s rally addressed by Syed Ali Shah Geelani even as rightwing Hindu organisations held a protest demanding the separatist leader’s arrest.The Chief Minister also rejected Geelani’s demand to curtail the duration of the Amarnath Yatra to 30 days from the planned 59 days and said it will take place as scheduled. “Some people were involved in such activities. Action will be taken against those involved in such an act,” Sayeed told journalists in Ahmedabad, recalling how separatist leader Masarat Alam Bhat, who had himself raised pro-Pakistan slogans and waved Pakistani flags at a rally attended by Geelani was put behind bars.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”When Masarat Alam was released, he had already spent five years under PSA (Public Safety Act). Then, I myself saw him with Pakistani flag. We then took immediate action (against Alam, who was again arrested),” Sayeed, who is on a visit to Gujarat to promote tourism in his state, said, adding “law will take its course”. At the April 15 rally Pakistani flags were waved by Geelani’s supporters which led to filing of case against him, his close aide Masarat Alam Bhat and others on sedition and other charges. Bhat was arrested the next day and booked under the stringent Public Safety Act a week later.At Friday’s rally, the first by him at militancy-hit Tral in south Kashmir, Geelani’s had demanded restricting the Amarnath Yatra to 30 days keeping in mind the safety of pilgrims and protection of environment. His supporters had chanted pro-Pakistan slogans and waved that country’s national flag. The Mufti insisted that the yatra will be held as scheduled as “people of Jammu and Kashmir are in its favour.” The Chief Minister appeared to share the view of Geelani against creating exclusive townships for Kashmiri Pandits who wanted to return to the Valley when he spoke about the “culture of living together”.”They are part of our culture, a culture of living together. They had to leave (the Valley) in an atmosphere of militancy in 1990. In the past, we attempted to bring them back but did not succeed in our efforts,” Sayeed said. “Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had also made such attempts. Those (displaced) three lakh Kashmiri Pandits are intellectuals and learned. They should come back. My Government will make all possible effort to bring them back,” he said when asked about resettlement of Kashmiri Pandits.Sayeed did not take a question about Pakistan’s stand that creation of “dedicated” townships for Pandits will change the demography of the state and will be in violation of the UN resolutions. Meanwhile, Union Minister Jitendra Singh has condemned the waving of Pakistani flags at Geelani’s rally and said he was confident that the Sayeed government will take steps to stop recurrence of such incidents.”It (waving of Pak flags) is condemnable. The government has reiterated there is no place for Pakistani flags being hoisted (in India), but at the same time, I would add that the government in the state is capable of handling any situation like this and we expect that they would rise to the occasion,” he said in Jammu.”The state government should go by the promise of not allowing such activities. The state government and the Chief Minister have already taken appropriate action in similar incidents in the past,” the MoS in Prime Minister’s Office said, apparently referring to Masarat Alam’s arrested under the Public Safety Act. Deputy Chief Minister Nirmal Singh, too, slammed Geelani over his demand to curtail Amarnath Yatra, saying the separatists had become “irrelevant” in the state.Asked whether government was considering action against Geelani after Pakistani flags were waved at his rally yesterday, Singh said, “Law will take its own course. The government is working and police is also working on it. Action will be taken against those who have indulged in such activity.” “Everything will move forward as per our Common Minimum Programme (CMP). In the coming days nobody would dare to indulge in any anti-national activities in J&K and stringent action would be taken against any such element,” he said, dismissing suggestions that the BJP-PDP government was soft on separatists.Meanwhile, rightwing Hindu outfits VHP and Bajrang Dal held a demonstration in Jammu to demand the arrest of Geelani. Led by Bajrang Dal convenor Rakesh Kumar, around 200 activists of the two organisations staged a protest near the Press Club area where they raised slogans against Geelani and the state government. P

Clashes break out in Srinagar after separatist Masarat Alam arrested

Srinagar: Separatist leader Masarat Alam Bhat was arrested on Friday amid mounting outrage over raising of pro-Pakistan slogans and flags at a rally attended by him on Wednesday as the Centre said it was keeping a “close watch” on the situation in the Kashmir Valley which witnessed renewed violence.

The 45-year-old hardliner was arrested from his home in Habbakadal area of the city early this morning.

Representational image. PTIRepresentational image. PTI

Representational image. PTI

Masarat, who was himself seen chanting slogans in support of Pakistan, besides Hurriyat Conference chairman Syed Ali Shah Geelani, had been placed under house arrest in Srinagar last night.

“Bhat has been arrested in the case registered in police station Budgam in connection with the provocative actions during the rally on Wednesday,” a senior police officer said.

An FIR was registered against Geelani, Masarat and other separatists leaders for “provocative activities” under various sections of Unlawful Activities Prevention Act and other penal laws.

The arrest came hours ahead of Hurriyat’s planned march to Tral area of Pulwama district where two youths had been killed in an army operation. Locals have alleged the two were killed in a staged encounter, while the army insisted they were militants shot down in a gunbattle.

Meanwhile, pitched battles were fought on the streets of Srinagar this afternoon when supporters of the Hurriyat Conference clashed with police resulting in injury to about a dozen people, including two policemen.

Clashes broke out between protesters and security forces soon after the Friday prayers concluded at the historic Jamia Masjid in Nowhatta area of the city. Reports of stone-pelting were also received from Tral and adjoining areas.

Young men with clothes wrapped on their faces were seen hurling stones at the police who fired teargas shells to break up the march.

As Srinagar was on the boil, the Centre said it was keeping a close watch on the situation and asserted there will be “zero tolerance” to militancy and separatism.

“The Central government is keeping a close watch on situation in J&K. Union Home Ministry is keeping itself abreast of all the sequence of the events from time to time. They are also giving most valuable guidance to the state of J&K,” Union Minister of State in the PMO Jitendra Singh said.

“As far as BJP is concerned both at Centre and states, our stand has been very consistent as far as nationalism, patriotism is concerned. We follow a policy of zero tolerance towards terrorism, towards separatism…The coalition, which has come in Jammu and Kashmir is purely for the sake of governance,” he said.

Apparently referring to the differences between the ruling allies in J&K-BJP and PDP- over tackling militancy, the minister said the two parties had come together “purely” to give a government in the troubled state after the Assembly polls threw up a fractured mandate.

Referring to Pakistan’s support to the separatists, Singh said,”Pakistan is always looking forward to fish in troubled waters but as far as we are concerned and the BJP is concerned, we are very clear about it. We have zero tolerance towards separatism and terrorism”, he said.

Chief Minister Mufti Mohammed Sayeed, under attack from several quarters, including the BJP, had yesterday denied permission for Hurriyat’s march to Tral.

Hours after the Wednesday rally, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh had called up the Chief Minister and asked him to take “immediate and stringent” action against the law breakers. He told Sayeed there cannot be any compromise on the issue of national security.

Leader of the moderate faction of the Hurriyat Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, who led today’s protests which saw the national flag being burnt, said “state terrorism” was the bigger issue in J&K.

“The bigger issue here is state terrorism, the bigger issue here is disappearance of more than 10,000 people who are missing in the last 10 years. You have more than eight thousand graves in Kashmir and nobody is talking about it in the Parliament and in Delhi, in other parts of India, (it’s) very unfortunate,” Farooq said.

He said the Hurriyat will register a “very strong” protest to demand an inquiry into the Tral incident and arrest of the culprits.

“We will continue our protest on these issues, we belive that the time has come when the (Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) has to go,” he said.

PTI

PDP govt in Jammu and Kashmir bows to BJP pressure: Masarat Alam arrested again

Hours after being placed under house arrest for waving a Pakistani flag and raising anti-India slogans at a rally held by Syed Geelani, separatist leader Masarat Alam, who was released from jail in controversial circumstances by J&K chief minister Mufti Mohammed Sayeed has been arrested once again.

Alam was arrested early this morning, according to media reports.

Speaking to CNN-IBN, Alam said that he was not surprised by the move and had expected nothing less of the government.

PTIPTI

PTI

Alam, along with Geelani was scheduled to hold another rally at Tral town in south Kashmir’s Pulwama district. Police had also taken steps to ensure that there would be no movement towards Tral. The Indian Express said that the move came “after the BJP told the PDP, its alliance partner in J&K, that the government should not allow the hardliner separatist to hold the rally in the South Kashmir town.”

Earlier, the Jammu & Kashmir Police filed a case under Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act against Geelani and separatist leader Masarat Alam Bhat for raising anti-national slogans during a rally in Srinagar on Wednesday. Cases were registered against Geelani, Bhat and Peer Saifullah under section 13 of UAPA, the Times of India reported.

Flayed for allowing the hardline Hurriyat leader to hold the rally in Srinagar, Mufti Mohammed Sayeed said that the waving of Pakistani flags and raising pro-Pak slogans were “not acceptable” and “will not be tolerated”.

As pointed out by Firstpost senior editor Sandipan Sharma, the political implications of the rally were egg on the faces of both the BJP and PDP, who had so raised the expectations of the people in the state.

“When nearly 70 percent of voters came out to participate in the recent assembly elections in J& K, it was assumed to be a mandate for peace, a stamp of approval on the Indian democratic traditions. Instead, we are hearing pro-Pak slogans. When Narendra Modi and his nationalist party allied with Mufti to form the government, it was assumed that the Valley would turn saffron. Instead, separatists like Masarat must be feeling proud seeing how green his Valley is today. The tone of Geelani’s speech, and the zest of his supporters, suggest that the tricolor is under a cloud, and the crescent and star is rising again.”

Sayeed was called hours after the rally in Srinagar on Wednesday by Home Minister Rajnath Singh asking him to take “immediate and stringent” action against the law breakers.

The Home Minister earlier on Thursday again had asserted, “We will not tolerate anyone raising slogans like ‘Pakistan zindabad’ on Indian soil.

“There can be no compromise on national security. Politics cannot impinge on national security,” he had reportedly told Sayeed.

Pushed on the backfoot, Sayeed had said, “I think authorities have taken note of that. They have taken a video of what has happened. I think law will take its own course, action will be taken”.

Pakistan flag row: Separatist leader Masarat Alam arrested; BJP says arrest ‘no surprise’

The Bharatiya Janata Party said it was no surprise that separatist leader Masarat Alam had been arrested, as the party was clear over not permitting any anti-India activity.

Buckling under pressure from alliance partner BJP, the PDP-led government in Jammu and Kashmir on Friday arrested separatist leader Masarat Alam Bhat in connection with the raising of Pakistani flags during a rally here on Wednesday.”Bhat has been arrested in the case registered in police station Budgam in connection with the provocative actions during the rally on Wednesday,” a senior police officer said.The 45-year-old hardline separatist leader, who was placed under house arrest late last night, was arrested from his home in Habbakadal area of the city early this morning and taken to police station Shaheed Gunj, the officer said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>As he was being led away by police, Bhat said his arrest was nothing new as “Jammu and Kashmir is being ruled on the might of power.”Before his arrest, speaking to ANI, Alam said, “Let them (government) do whatever they want to. We will carry on with what we are doing. My message to them is that they should follow the Hurriyat program,” he added.The Bharatiya Janata Party said it was no surprise that separatist leader Masarat Alam had been arrested, as the party was clear over not permitting any anti-India activity.“It’s no surprise, the BJP’s stand was clear that no anti-India activity will be permitted. And this is not a place where the Pakistani flags or pro-Pakistan slogans are going to be accepted,” said BJP spokesperson Nalin Kohli.“So it was imminent and if the arrest has happened, it is as per the process that should take place,” he added.Coming under attack from all quarters including PDP ally BJP over Wednesday’s rally by separatists in Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammed Sayeed denied permission for today’s congregation even as he said waving of Pakistani flags and raising pro-Pak slogans were “not acceptable” and “will not be tolerated”.Sayeed directed the police to refuse permission for a rally which was scheduled to be taken from Srinagar to Tral where a youth was killed allegedly by army while in their custody.Geelani, against whom police has registered a case, issued a statement late in the evening saying that he would not be cowed down by the state government.Sayeed was called hours after the rally in Srinagar on Wednesday by Home Minister Rajnath Singh asking him to take “immediate and stringent” action against the law breakers.The Home Minister again asserted, “We will not tolerate anyone raising slogans like ‘Pakistan zindabad’ on Indian soil.Pushed on the backfoot, Sayeed tried to defend his decision of giving permission to the rally but made it clear that hoisting of Pakistan flags and raising pro-Pakistan slogans “is not acceptable and will not be tolerated.” “I think authorities have taken note of that. They have taken a video of what has happened. I think law will take its own course, action will be taken.The state Government, in which BJP is an alliance partner, came in for flak over its decision to allow Geelani to hold the rally in Srinagar city which comes after a gap of five years.During the rally, separatist Alam, released from jail last month, praised founder of Lashker-e-Taiba terror outfit Hafeez Sayeed and asked people to join hands with his outfit.The Jammu and Kashmir Police has registered an FIR against Geelani, Alam and another separatist leader from Hurriyat Conference under various sections of Ranbir Penal Code and Unlawful (Activities) Prevention Act.(With agency inputs)

Digvijaya Singh wants to know under which sections Masarat Alam was arrested

The FIR registered against Geelani, Alam and others was under various sections of Ranbir Penal Code and Unlawful (Activities) Prevention Act.
File Photo

Separatist leader Masarat Alam was on Friday arrested for waving Pakistani flags and raising pro-Pak slogans. Before his formal arrest, hardline Hurriyat Conference chairman Syed Ali Shah Geelani and Masarat Alam were on Thursday put under house arrest.Soon upon Alam’s arrest, Congress leader, Digvijaya Singh took to micro blogging site demanding the information on under which sections these two were booked.Digvijaya tweeted, “Want to know under what sections Alam and Geelani have been arrested. Have they been arrested for Sedition or Waging a War against the nation.” <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The state Government, in which BJP is an alliance partner, came in for flak over its decision to allow Geelani to hold the rally in Srinagar city which comes after a gap of five years.During the rally, separatist Alam, released from jail last month, praised founder of Lashker-e-Taiba terror outfit Hafeez Sayeed and asked people to join hands with his outfit.Bowing to the pressure from ally BJP and Central Home Ministry, Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammaed Sayeed denied permission for Friday’s congregation. and said pro-Pak slogans were ‘not acceptable’ and ‘will not be tolerated’.

Pakistan flag row: Pressure mounts on Mufti Mohammad Sayeed to arrest Masarat Alam

Pressure is mounting on Mufti Mohammad Sayeed government to arrest Hurriyat hardliner Masarat Alam who has said he would not be bogged down by police cases and pro-Pakistan slogans would be raised in future rallies too.

Shiv Sena and Dogra Front workers in Jammu burn an effigy of separatist leader Masarat Alam on Thursday demanding action against him for hoisting Pakistani flags during a rally in Srinagar on Wednesday

PTI
Pressure is mounting on Mufti Mohammad Sayeed government to arrest Hurriyat hardliner Masarat Alam who has said he would not be bogged down by police cases and pro-Pakistan slogans would be raised in future rallies too.Police have registered a case under section 13 of Unlawful Activities Prevention Act, 120-B (criminal conspiracy), 147 (rioting), 341 (wrongful restraint), 336 (does any act so rashly or negligently as to endanger human life), 427 (commits mischief) of Ranbir Penal Code (RPC) against Alam, Hurriyat hawk Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Peer Saifullah and other separatist leaders for provocative activities and hoisting Pakistani flag in Hyderpora on Wednesday.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Twenty four hours on, nobody has been arrested or questioned by the police so far, sparking fresh wave of anger among Congress and the BJP, which is the ruling alliance partner of the People’s Democratic Party.”Investigation is on and it (arresting Alam and others) will be decided accordingly. Case has been registered and investigating officer is doing his job,” Koondaveeti Rajendra Kumar, director general of police, Jammu and Kashmir, told dna.Facing flak Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed broke his silence saying law will take its own course. “I think law will take its own course, action will be taken… But something which is not acceptable (hoisting of Pakistan flag or raising Pakistan slogans) will not be tolerated,” said Mufti. But Mufti’s alliance partner BJP is not buying the argument saying nothing but arrest of Alam would serve the purpose.”I want action against Masarat Alam as soon as possible. I am hopeful that state government will take action as per the law. The issue of national security cannot be compromised. The case has rightly been registered against them. It is a straight case of sedition,” said Rajiv Jasrotia, BJP State General Secretary and MLA from Kathua constituency.Alam however remained defiant saying he would not be bogged down by police cases and pro Pakistan slogans are part of Kashmir’s struggle.”Since 1947 people have been raising slogans in favour of Pakistan and there is nothing new. Was not Pakistani flag unfurled on Ghanta Ghar Lal Chowk in 2008? It is not first time this is happening. In future these slogans would be shouted again in the rallies,” Alam told dna.Hurriyat hardliner noted that the arrest is nothing new for him. “We will never be cowed down by these FIRs. I am not afraid of my arrest,” he said.

Army chief reviews security situation as J&K seeks to revoke AFSPA

Jammu: Army Chief General Dalbir Singh on Wednesday visited Udhampur-based Northern Command in Jammu and Kashmir and reviewed overall security situation of the State.

The meeting assumes significance in wake of Chief Minister Mufti Mohmmad Sayeed meeting five top Commanders, including chiefs of Northern and Western Commands and 34 Corps commanders looking after the operational command of Jammu and Kashmir, where Mufti government is batting for revocation of Armed Forces Special Power Act (AFSPA).

Indian Army chief General Dalbir Singh Suhag. Image courtesy PIBIndian Army chief General Dalbir Singh Suhag. Image courtesy PIB

Indian Army chief General Dalbir Singh Suhag. PIB

The Chief of Army Staff Gen Dalbir Singh arrived on a day’s official visit to Headquarters Northern Command at Udhampur today, PRO, Defence Northern Command Col SD Goswami said on Wednesday.

He was received by the Army Commander Lt Gen DS Hooda, who later briefed him on the overall security situation in the Command theatre and the relief operations undertaken by the Indian Army for the people during recent heavy rains and snowfall in the valley.

The Chief of Army Staff (COAS) also interacted with other senior Commanders present at the Headquarters, PRO said.

The COAS addressed and commended all ranks for the recent operational successes and the high state of operational preparedness.

He also complimented the officers and men of Dhruva Command for extending humanitarian assistance to the Awam, he said.

Mufti met top commanders under Command of Northern Command including its Chief Lt Gen DS Hooda at dinner meeting on Monday.

The GOC-in-C Western Command Lt Gen KJ Singh and General Officer Commanding (GoC), 9 Corps, Lt Gen Rajiv Tewari called on Chief Minister at his residence on April 6 here.

During the meeting, Lt Gen Singh briefed the Chief Minister about the overall security situation in the areas of his responsibility, particularly along International Border in Jammu region and beyond.

PTI

Only 10-15% of Kashmiri Pandits will return to the Valley, says Mufti Mohammad Sayeed

Only 10 to 15% of displaced Kashmiri Pandits will choose to return to the Valley, Chief Minister Mufti Mohmmad Sayeed claimed as differences between PDP and BJP over their resettlement came to the fore on Thursday.

Only 10 to 15% of displaced Kashmiri Pandits will choose to return to the Valley, Chief Minister Mufti Mohmmad Sayeed claimed as differences between PDP and BJP over their resettlement came to the fore on Thursday.As per reports gathered from interactions with Kashmir Pandits only 10 to 15% of them will choose to return to the Valley, Mufti told the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly as he reiterated his government’s endeavour to create a conducive atmosphere for those who are willing to return.”They (Kashmiri Pandits) are well placed in various parts of the country and abroad… If we do something on the matter, they will come to the Valley on seasonal pattern,” he said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”They are good and highly qualified people. Before this (militancy erupted) KPs have also gone out of Kashmir. They included P N Haksar, P N Dhar, Dr U Kaul, Dr Sameer Kaul. They need bigger canvas and move out of Valley,” he said.”But in 1990 a lot of KPs went out of Kashmir from everywhere but we will try to bring them back,” he said. Speaking against separate township for displaced Kashmiri Pandits, the chief minister said when there were plans to set up camps for them “they were of the view that their settlement should be in their native places”.”I am happy that one leader of Kashmiri Samiti opposed the idea of separate clusters for KPs and suggested that they should live at their native places,” he said, adding “they batted strongly that wherever they will live, they will live with Muslims, Sikhs and other together”.”I want to tell the House… There is no plan (for a separate township for KPs in Kashmir). A hue and cry erupted that a separate Homeland is being made for them. I said that is not possible. Those who are living there have to spend their lives together. We will try our best,” he said.Differences between Jammu and Kashmir ruling alliance partners — PDP and BJP — came to the fore with Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh earlier in the day making it clear that the Centre was going ahead with its plans for composite townships for KPs.

Mufti Mohammad Sayeed government wants AFSPA removed despite terror attacks

On a day when three terror attacks rocked the Valley claiming lives of three policemen, the Jammu and Kashmir government on Monday said it would work towards a phased withdrawal of the controversial AFSPA from areas in the state that are free from militancy for some time.

On a day when three terror attacks rocked the Valley claiming lives of three policemen, the Jammu and Kashmir government on Monday said it would work towards a phased withdrawal of the controversial AFSPA from areas in the state that are free from militancy for some time.In a written reply to a question of National Conference MLA Devender Rana, Chief Minister Mufti Mohammed Sayeed said, “Keeping in view the improving security scenario, the state government will examine the need for denotifying disturbed areas which have been free from militancy related incidents for quite some time so as to enable a phased withdrawal of AFSPA from such areas.”<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Rana wanted to know whether the government proposes to revoke AFSPA and the criterion being adopted to identify the areas where AFSPA can be removed. Kashmir on Monday witnessed three terror attacks. In the deadliest of the attacks, three policemen were killed in a militant ambush at Ashipora area in South Kashmir’s Shopian district.

Jammu and Kashmir: Three unarmed policemen shot dead by militants in Shopian

Srinagar: Militants on Monday shot dead three unarmed policemen, who had gone for investigating a crime in a village in Shopian district of Jammu and Kashmir.

Representational image. Reuters

Representational image. Reuters

“Three policemen – one head constable and two constables – were killed in a militant attack at Ashipora in Shopian district,” a police officer said.

He said the slain policemen were unarmed and had gone to the village for investigating a crime when militants opened fire on them.

This is second militant attack on policemen within hours in Kashmir Valley.

Earlier in the day, ultras shot at and critically injured a police officer in Pattan area of Baramulla district.

Sub Inspector Ghulam Mustafa was shot at and injured by two pistol-borne militants in a bus which was on its way to Pattan, a police official said.

The driver of the bus drove the bus to a local police post where the cops shifted their injured colleague to hospital, he said.

Militants also shot at and injured a person in Tral township of south Kashmir’s Pulwama district today.

Rafiq Ahmad Bhat, a former militant of Hizbul Mujahideen outfit, was shot at and critically injured by gunmen in the town, police said.

They said Bhat was rushed to Srinagar for treatment.

PTI

Kashmir floods Live: Centre sanctions Rs 200 cr for relief and rescue measures

Mar 30, 2015

Highlights

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The Jhelum river on Monday crossed the danger level in Srinagar and Sangam area of South Kashmir with heavy rains lashing most parts of the state which sounded an alert asking people to move to safer places.

A senior official said water level of river Jhelum at 6 am at Sangam (South Kashmir) and Ram Munshi Bagh (Srinagar city) has touched 22.4 feet and 18.8 feet respectively. Danger level at Sangam is 21 feet and at Ram Munshi Bagh it is 18 feet.

People living on the banks of the river Jhelum have been asked to remain alert and advised to move to safer places. Old persons and children have also been asked to shift to specially set up camps, a government spokesman has said.

AFP imageAFP image

AFP image

He said all the employees deployed for flood control have been asked to report for duty immediately.

If the water level breaches 23 feet mark, the state will have to undertake a massive rescue operations and evacuate people from areas adjoining the river.

Flash floods triggered by incessant rain have damaged scores of houses, school buildings and other structures besides snapping road connectivity in the Kashmir Valley, an official said on Sunday.

“Over 80 structures, including residential homes, school buildings and other structures, have suffered damage due to flash floods since Saturday,” an administrative officer told IANS in Srinagar.

The Srinagar-Jammu National Highway was closed following landslides at a number of places on Sunday. The Srinagar-Gulmarg road was also closed after a bridge in Kunzar village was washed away by the swollen Ferozepur Nallah.
There was water-logging in many commercial and residential areas in Srinagar.

Chief Minister Mufti Muhammad Sayeed took stock of the flood threat and reviewed the preparedness of the administration that has already been put on high alert.

The University of Kashmir has postponed all examinations scheduled for Monday and Tuesday.

The Meteorological Department predicts heavy rainfall will continue for another six days, according to CNN-IBN. Around 300 people had died when flash floods had hit Jammu and Kashmir in 2014.

Meanwhile, 45 villagers are trapped in Poonch and the police and army personnel have been sent for rescue. “We are monitoring the sitaution,” a government official said.

DG NDRF also told CNN-IBN that there is no need to panic as they were working with government officials and everything was under control.

JVMC hospital, a government hospital on the outskirts of Srinagar, was waterlogged. Patients were being evacuated from the hospital. No casualties have been reported due to the floods so far, according to NDTV. Flood relief camps have also been set up in Srinagar.

with inputs from agencies

Mufti’s government is maximum ‘circus’ minimum governance: Congress

Congress on Wednesday attacked Mufti Mohammad Sayeed government for triggering controversies after controversies during it short stint of rule saying it is maximum ‘circus’, minimum governance.

Mufti Mohammad Sayeed
File Photo

Congress on Wednesday attacked Mufti Mohammad Sayeed government for triggering controversies after controversies during it short stint of rule saying it is maximum ‘circus’, minimum governance. “Mufti government is maximum circus minimum governance. Common people on the street are asking is this what we got after two months of negotiations at Srinagar, Jammu, Mumbai, Delhi, Nagpur at all,” Congress Legislative Party (CLP) leader Nawang Rigzin Jora told reporters. He said the tango of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Mufti Sayeed lacks rhythm, beat and sync in common knowledge when they chose to be partners. “That it would be such an amusing sight, only few expected,” he said adding the roots of this public spectacles were embedded in their respective political ideologies. “While the PDP makes no bones about its leaning towards separatists, the BJP has never shied away from wearing its hinduvta identity on its sleeves”, he said. Jora said while the PDP was for making border irrelevant and restructuring the state constitution (hints of shared sovereignty of Jammu and Kashmir between India and Pakistan – as per their election manifesto), the BJP was for reclaiming territory under Pakistan occupation as per PM Modi’s assertion in Parliament referring to the parliamentary resolution”. “While Mufti Sayeed is for unconditional dialogue with all stakeholder – meaning Hurriyat and separatists; the BJP is for dialogue, if any, within the ambit of the Constitution. The two are as different as chalk and cheese,” Jora said adding that yet they chose to get together. Also Read: Mufti Mohammad Sayeed comes out strongly against Pakistan, says terror attacks in Jammu and Kashmir a ‘conspiracy’

BJP, PDP to announce coordination committee in Jammu and Kashmir

Hit by differences, Jammu and Kashmir’s ruling alliance partners BJP and PDP would soon announce a coordination committee to ensure better coordination in the government and that the government there works in consonance with the common minimum programme.

Hit by differences, Jammu and Kashmir’s ruling alliance partners BJP and PDP would soon announce a coordination committee to ensure better coordination in the government and that the government there works in consonance with the common minimum programme.According to sources, the two parties will have three members each on the panel which would meet periodically and decide on important matters for the government in the state to work as per CMP agreed on between the two parties.Sources said that PDP president Mehbooba Mufti and BJP’s Jammu and Kashmir unit president Jugal Kishore Sharma will be part of the committee, besides two other members from each side.The sources add that the committee will be finalised in the next two-three days but may be announced once the current session of Jammu and Kashmir Assembly is over by the end of the month.
The coordination committee at the state level will see that there is smooth functioning in the government and this will ascertain the process of consultation and communication in running the government, a senior party leader said.CMP was announced in Srinagar after a 25-member council of ministers led by Mufti Mohammed Sayeed was sworn in on March 1.BJP leaders have expressed the hope that there will be no further controversies in Jammu and Kashmir and the government there will work as per CMP.There have been some controversies, especially on Chief Minister Mufti Mohammed Sayeed’s post-oath taking remarks crediting Pakistan, Hurriyat and militants for having contributed to the smooth conduct of elections in the state and on the release of separatist leader Masarat Alam.
Some MLAs of PDP demanded that the NDA government return the mortal remains of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru, another potential point of tension in the coalition.

Kashmir govt will abide by court orders on release of prisoners: PDP on Masarat Alam issue

Jammu: Unfazed by the controversy over the release of separatist Masarat Alam, Peoples Democratic Party on Tuesday said the Jammu and Kashmir government will abide by the court directives on the release of political prisoners.

Jammu and Kashmir CM Mufti Mohammad Sayeed. AP

Jammu and Kashmir CM Mufti Sayeed. AP

“Whatever the Supreme Court and courts tell us, we are going to abide by that (on release of political prisoners in future)”, senior PDP leader and Minister for Sports, Imran Raza Ansari told reporters on the sidelines of a sports event in Jammu.

Asked whether the Mufti Sayeed government has written to New Delhi assuring it that the policy to release political prisoners will be put on hold, Raza said, “Whatever law says …whatever courts direct us …we have been maintaining this”.

On the issue of consulting coalition partner BJP or New Delhi, Raza said, “We are implementing authorities (of court orders)”.

“We are doing political reconciliation. Let that happen,” he said.

BJP legislators in Jammu and Kashmir had on Monday lodged a strong protest with Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed over the release of Alam and demanded his re-arrest.

The party had also taken exception to the “misinformation campaign” that the decision to release Alam was taken after consulting it.

Under intense attack from BJP, PDP had defended the decision and said the step was taken to facilitate creation of a conducive atmosphere for talks with separatists.

PTI

Masarat Alam’s release: BJP says it has zero-tolerance policy towards terrorism

New Delhi: Amidst the row with its ruling coalition partner PDP in Jammu and Kashmir over the release of separatist leader Masarat Alam, BJP on Tuesday said it had a “zero-tolerance policy towards terrorism and separatism” and did not agree with the move.

Representational image. AFP

Representational image. AFP

Asked about the issue which has rocked the PDP-BJP alliance within days of its government taking charge in Jammu and Kashmir, Union Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said that not only did it not agree with the way that Masarat, a Hurriyat hardliner, was released, but it was also against the decision.

“BJP adopts a zero-tolerance policy towards terrorism and separatism and will not bow down by allowing soft or weak policy on these issues,” he said.

“The manner in which a separatist leader has been released, BJP does not agree with it. We are against it. It is wrong,” he said, adding that Home Minister Rajnath Singh had on Monday made it clear in both Houses of Parliament.

“Home Minister is keeping a close watch on the issue and whatever will happen will be as per the Constitution and as per the law,” he said.

A delegation of Jammu and Kashmir BJP leaders will meet party president Amit Shah on Tuesday and apprise him of the meeting they had on Monday with Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammed Sayeed.

According to sources, a delegation of Jammu and Kashmir BJP leaders met Sayeed and handed a memorandum to him on the issue of Alam’s release while conveying the party leadership’s “annoyance” to him over the matter.

The party leaders conveyed to Sayeed that the decision to release Alam was not discussed with BJP and done unilaterally, which was against the agenda of the Common Minimum Programme agreed between the allies.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi had on Monday in Lok Sabha denounced the release of Alam by the Jammu and Kashmir government, in which BJP is a partner, saying he shared the “outrage” over the unacceptable decision and would take whatever action was required.

“I assure the country and the House that whatever is happening there (in Jammu and Kashmir), the Union government was neither consulted not informed… Government does not accept such action.

“In one voice, we express our anger against those supporting separatists and misusing the law. In the coming days, we will take whatever action is required and we are committed to the nation’s integrity,” Modi had said.

PTI

Will never support Mufti’s remarks on Pakistan: PM Modi tells Rajya Sabha

New Delhi: Breaking his silence, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday disapproved the comments of Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed giving credit to Pakistan, Hurriyat and militants for smooth conduct of Assembly polls, saying such a statement cannot be supported.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi.Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

“If somebody makes such a statement, we can never support it,” Modi said in Rajya Sabha, referring to the controversial remarks made by Sayeed who is heading a PDP-BJP coalition government in the state.

Members have been demanding Modi’s response to the remarks made by Sayeed soon after he was sworn-in on Sunday.

“If somebody makes a statement somewhere and we are forced to respond here, things will not work,” the Prime Minister said.

He asserted that his government “will move ahead with the policy of ‘zero tolerance’ towards terrorism” and “all resolutions passed here (in Parliament) will be implemented in letter and spirit.”

Modi said the credit for the successful elections goes to the people of Jammu and Kashmir who “removed doubts” in the international community by turning up in large numbers with “overwhelming courage and pride” and “put their stamp of approval on what India had been saying all along”.

He underlined faith in people of Jammu and Kashmir while asserting his government’s commitment to unity and integrity.

On questions by some members whether BJP will pull out of the coalition government over the issue, Modi said the government will run only on the basis of Common Minimum Programme (CMP).

“I want to assure this House and 125 crore people of the country that the government formed in Jammu and Kashmir is based on the Common Minimum Programme and the government will run on its basis,” he said while replying to the Motion of Thanks to the President’s Address.

PTI

Modi breaks silence, says will never support Mufti’s poll remarks on Pakistan

New Delhi: Breaking his silence, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday disapproved the comments of Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed giving credit to Pakistan, Hurriyat and militants for smooth conduct of Assembly polls, saying such a statement cannot be supported.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi.Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

“If somebody makes such a statement, we can never support it,” Modi said in Rajya Sabha, referring to the controversial remarks made by Sayeed who is heading a PDP-BJP coalition government in the state.

Members have been demanding Modi’s response to the remarks made by Sayeed soon after he was sworn-in on Sunday.

“If somebody makes a statement somewhere and we are forced to respond here, things will not work,” the Prime Minister said.

He asserted that his government “will move ahead with the policy of ‘zero tolerance’ towards terrorism” and “all resolutions passed here (in Parliament) will be implemented in letter and spirit.”

Modi said the credit for the successful elections goes to the people of Jammu and Kashmir who “removed doubts” in the international community by turning up in large numbers with “overwhelming courage and pride” and “put their stamp of approval on what India had been saying all along”.

He underlined faith in people of Jammu and Kashmir while asserting his government’s commitment to unity and integrity.

On questions by some members whether BJP will pull out of the coalition government over the issue, Modi said the government will run only on the basis of Common Minimum Programme (CMP).

“I want to assure this House and 125 crore people of the country that the government formed in Jammu and Kashmir is based on the Common Minimum Programme and the government will run on its basis,” he said while replying to the Motion of Thanks to the President’s Address.

PTI

Pakistan, militants allowed conducive atmosphere for polls: J&K CM Mufti

Jammu: Soon after taking oath, Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed on Sunday stoked controversy saying Hurriyat, militant outfits and “people from across the border”, an oblique reference to Pakistan, allowed conducive atmosphere for assembly polls, drawing sharp reaction from NC leader Omar Abdullah who demanded that BJP clarify its stand.

Jammu and Kashmir CM Mufti Mohammed Sayeed. AFPJammu and Kashmir CM Mufti Mohammed Sayeed. AFP

Jammu and Kashmir CM Mufti Mohammed Sayeed. AFP

“I want to say this on record and I have told this to the Prime Minister that the we must credit the Hurriyat, militant outfits for the conduct of assembly elections in the state,” Sayeed said during a press conference in Jammu after being sworn in as head of the PDP-BJP government in Jammu and Kashmir at a ceremony which was attended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Flanked by deputy chief minister Nirmal Singh of BJP and newly inducted cabinet minister Haseeb Drabu, Sayeed said, “God forbid if they (militants) would have done something. It would not have been possible to have smooth conduct of the elections.”

Sayeed said that he felt proud that the people in the heart of Srinagar city came out in large number to vote and thanked the “people from across the border” for the “conducive atmosphere” for the smooth conduct of the elections.

“People from across the border made the atmosphere conducive. They also allowed the democratic process to continue in the state. This gives us a hope,” he said in a reference to Pakistan.

Former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah hit out at Sayeed’s remarks and asked BJP to explain its stand.

“Pakistan, Huriyaat & Militants ALLOWED Peaceful conduct of elections” says Syeed, I guess we should be grateful to their generosity (sic).

“Dear @BJP4India Please explain role of security forces & Polling staff considering your CM just said, “Pakistan allowed elections in J&K”, Omar tweeted.

On a retweet about BJP worker in Jammu celebrating, Omar wrote, “Or Just thanking Pak for JK elections.”

Speaking to reporters, Sayeed also voiced hope that the induction of separatist turned mainstream politician Sajjad Gani Lone in the Ministry would open avenues for others to follow the suit. “Sajjad Gani Lone has given an opening, an avenue for others (separatists) to follow,” he said.

He said peace is a pre-requisite of governance.

“They (referring to Pakistan) also have assets Hurriyat, other militants, if they had done something (during the election) such a participation of people was not possible. I am proud that heart of the Valley Sringar also came forward and participated in the elections,” Sayeed said.

“If Jammu and Kashmir have to be a model of growth. Like people in Gujarat say ‘Good Governance’. Peace is prerequisite,” he said.

Lauding the then Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee as a great statesman, Sayeed said the government will take forward his philosophy of “Insaniyat, Jamhooriat and Kashmiriyat”.

“We believed that Hurriyat and separatists also have a view point. We did not keep them locked in homes,” he said.

Sayeed said BJP and PDP have put together a great team to work together.

“History has given us an opportunity. Kashmir remained a problem before every Prime Minister be it Nehru, Shastri, Morarji and even before Prime Minister Narendra Modi. We want to change it. We want to make this alliance a turning point in trying to meet hearts and minds of the people,” he said.

Sayeed said people like it or not but it was his decision to bring together “North Pole and South Pole”.

He said Kashmir was the only Muslim majority state which rejected Jinnah’s theory and acceded to India.

“In Kashmir complete autonomy and in Jammu ‘Ek Pradhan, Ek Vidhan, Ek Nishan’. This has happened. We want to connect Kashmiri People with rest of the country, what is the purpose of connecting Kashmir with Jammu?…History has given us a chance. We have a majority in Kashmir, BJP has got 26 seats in Jammu,” he said.

PTI

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