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145

Srinagar, 19 May(KMW): Jammu and Kashmir People’s Political Party (PPP) Chairman Er. Hilal Ahmad War was today arrested from Maisuma after he led a rally protesting against Modi’s visit to J&K. Modi who is on a three day visit to the state reached Srinagar today.

When the PPP rally took off from Maisuma and started veering into the adjacent areas, a heavy contingent of police swooped upon the activists to disburse the rally which led to intense clashes between police and party activists. Police arrested War and lodged him in police station Maisuma. War and his party men were to proceed to Lal Chowk for a day-long sit-in when police swung into action. Chanting ‘go Modi go’ slogans, War quickly addressed a heavy gathering of media persons present there.

“Modi heads a state that occupied us in 1947 and continues to forcibly occupy and brutalise us,” said War.
He said that Modi is unwelcome in J&K and he can’t forcibly mark his presence here.HILAL

“If Modi wants to give anything to Kashmiris, he must repeat the pledges and promises of first Prime Minister of India J L Nehru to the people of Kashmir , to the leadership of Pakistan and the leadership of the world wherein he said that the fate of Kashmir will be decided ultimately by the people of J&K,” said War. “Modi should understand that India can’t get away with the genocide his party and the Hindutva forces have unleashed against the Muslims of J&K. India will have to face the comity of nations.” War urged the international community to take Kashmir issue seriously and work towards its resolution besides impressing upon Indian leadership to put a halt to grave human rights violations in Kashmir. He said that the Indian leadership should be tried for war crimes in the international court of law.

War reminded Modi that he should realise that he’s on a foreign land which isn’t a part of India.

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Srinagar, May 18 (KMW): Army on Friday claimed to have killed three militants in a gunfight at Brinjal forest area of Vilgam, Handwara in north Kashmir’s Kupwara district.

An army official told news agency that soldiers of 15 RR intercepted a group of militants believed to be infiltrators at Brinjal forest adjacent to Shahnagar Jat Gali, around 7 kilometres away from Tehsil headquarter Vilgam.

“The group of militants opened fire upon the forces which were retaliated by the troops triggering off a gunfight. The militants fired indiscriminately and in the gunfight that ensued, three infiltrators were gunned down,” he said.

“We are ascertaining their outfit affiliation,” the official said, adding the operation is still going on.

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New Delhi, May 18(KMW): Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi will attend the commencement of work on Zojila Tunnel on the Srinagar-Leh National Highway at an event in Jive-tsal in Leh tomorrow. He will also lay the foundation stone for Srinagar Ring Road and Jammu Ring Road at separate events at Sher-e-Kashmir International Conference Centre (SKICC), Srinagar and at General Zorawar Singh Auditorium in Jammu the same day. Union Minister for Road Transport & Highways, Shipping, Water Resources, River Development & Ganga Rejuvenation Shri Nitin Gadkari will also be present at the events.

The 14 km long Zojila tunnel will be India’s longest road tunnel and Asia’s longest bidirectional tunnel. The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, chaired by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi, had approved the construction, operation and maintenance of this 2-lane bi-directional tunnel with Parallel Escape (Egress) tunnel between Baltal and Minamarg on the Srinagar-Leh section of NH-1A at a total cost of Rs 6800 crore earlier this year.

The construction of this tunnel will provide all weather connectivity between Srinagar, Kargil and Leh. This route remains snow-bound for a large part of the year, and is ravaged by frequent avalanches. As a result, road connection to places in the Laddakh region stands disrupted for long periods, preventing even essential supplies from reaching people, shutting down businesses, affecting healthcare and education. The tunnel will bring relief to the people of this region by providing all weather connectivity. It will also cut down the time taken to cross the Zojila pass from the present 3.5 hours to just 15 minutes, besides making the drive much safer and convenient.

The construction of the tunnel is expected to bring about all round economic and socio-cultural integration of these regions. In addition to direct jobs generated during construction, it will also lead to massive indirect and spinoff jobs due to acceleration of economic growth. The government is committed to development of manpower skilled for tunnelling jobs in Jammu & Kashmir. The project has strategic and socio-economic importance, and will be an instrument for the development of the economically backward districts in Jammu & Kashmir.

The Zojila tunnel has been planned as a smart tunnel. It will have latest safety features like fully transverse ventilation system, Uninterrupted Power Supply (UPS), Tunnel Emergency Lighting, CCTV Monitoring, Variable Message Signs (VMS), Traffic Logging Equipment, Over Height Vehicle Detection, Tunnel Radio System, etc. It will have pedestrian cross passages at every 250 meter and motorable cross passages and lay-bys at every 750 meter. It will have emergency telephones and fire-fighting cabinets at every 125 meter.

The Ring Roads and Srinagar and Jammu are aimed at reducing traffic congestion at these cities and making road travel safer, faster, more convenient and more environment friendly.

The 42.1 Km, 4 lane Srinagar Ring Road will link Galandar in West Srinagar to Sumbal. Being built at a cost of Rs 1860 crore, this road will provide a new route from Srinagar to Kargil and Leh, and reduce travel time. There will be a major bridge, three flyovers, 23 tunnels and 2 via-ducts on this route.

The 58.25 km, 4-lane Jammu Ring Road, being built at a cost of Rs 2023.87 crore, will link Jagati (western Jammu ) to Raya Morh. There will be 8 large bridges, 6 flyovers, 2 tunnels and 4 via ducts on this route.

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SRINAGAR, MAY 17 (KMW): Separatist leaders including Hurriyat (M) chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) chief Yasin Malik on Thursday called the ceasefire announced by New Delhi during Ramadhan in Kashmir as a “cosmetic measure”.

On Wednesday, Home Ministry asked the forces not to launch anti-militancy operations in the state in view of holy month of Ramadhan.

Addressing a seminar, titled ‘Responsibility of Leadership in Safeguarding the Sanctity of Martyrdom’ organized by the Hurriyat(M) at its Rajbagh headquarters, they called for the resolution of Kashmir issue.

“Until and until a comprehensive plan is made to resolve the Kashmir issue, these cosmetic things won’t work,” said Malik, while reacting to the ceasefire. “This is a cosmetic measure. Will it make any difference on the ground,” he asked.

Mirwaiz said it doesn’t make any difference whether ceasefire is called for a month or two. “We need to find the root cause of the conflict and the reason why youth is picking up arms. We need to address the dispute,” he said.

Earlier, he said that calling strikes is their compulsion and that the Joint Resistance Leadership (JRL) was working to find an alternative strategy.

Addressing a seminar, ‘Responsibility of Leadership in Safeguarding the Sanctity of Martyrdom’ organized by the Hurriyat(M) at its Rajbagh headquarters, he said that hartals can’t achieve goals.

“It is our compulsion, but the Joint Resistance Leadership is working to find an alternative strategy (to register protest),” he said.

He also called for all sections of the society to remain united to resist “all-out operations of New Delhi”. He claimed that Delhi has decided to force the people of Kashmir to surrender.

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New Delhi, May 17(KMW):The Prime Minister, Narendra Modi has greeted the people on the beginning of holy month of Ramzan.

“Ramzan greetings to everyone. We recall the pious thoughts of Paighambar Mohammad Sahab, who highlighted the importance of harmony, kindness and charity. These are also the virtues the Holy Month of Ramzan stands for”, the Prime Minister said.

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PAHALGAM, MAY 17(KMW): Minister for Tourism Tassaduq Hussain Mufti Wednesday convened a meeting of officers to review development works being executed by various agencies in Pahalgam.

MLA Pahalgam Altaf Ahamd Wani, Vice Chairman JKTDC Rafi Ahmad Mir, Secretary Tourism Rigzin Samphel, Chief Executive Officer Pahalgam Development Authority Mushtaq Ahmad Simnani and other officers of Tourism, PDA and district administration attended the meeting.

The Minister stressed upon the need for improved coordination among departments including PDA, PWD R&B, UEED, PHE, PDD, Health, Education and Tourism Department so that targets are achieved within stipulated time.

He said the proposed ‘Pahalgam Master Plan’ needs to be in sync with Court dirtections and in conformity with fragile ecosystem of the area. The Minister directed the concerned for finalizing report within the time period of 40 days.

Mufti took a serious note on various issues which include Filling of River Lidder at Yenner and Nunwan, Widening of Khanabal Pahalgam Road, extraction of River bed material, Plantation at Pahalgam, and issues related to the tourism department in the area. He directed for taking concrete measures to improve the infrastructural and sanitation scenario in the area.

The Minister laid stress on scientific disposal of waste, sanitation and waste segregation process at source, besides activating of Enforcement wing of Municipal Commission Pahalgam for curbing the menace of throwing garbage on the River Bank, road side, and in the Forest area.

He also asked concerned for preparing a road map for various ingenious plant species plantation and causes of Forest fires with remedial measures being taken by the Forest Department to avoid such incidents in future.

Emphasizing on the need for sustainable development without harming ecology, flora and fauna of the area, the Minister directed the concerned officials for taking action against people involved in harming ecology and environment.

He sought details regarding conservation of water reservoirs at Pahalgam and directed the PHE officials for installing mesh type roofing of over water sources without any further delay so that wild animals would not contaminate the drinking water sources.

Besides, directing for furnishing test reports of STP Pahalgam on regular basis, the Minister also sought detailed water quality analysis reports and directed for conducting regular water quality tests to keep check on the quality of drinking water being supplied in the area.

He asked for regular checking of hotel STPs to monitor quality of sewage treatment and management of solid waste.

While seeking details regarding the Environment Impact Assessment (EIA) report, the Minister said the forests play an important role in preserving the fragile eco-system, biodiversity and natural habitat. He stressed for regulating ponies through specified tracks to avoid shortcuts causing damage to forest habitat.

Besides, keeping check on exorbitant charges by pony wallas, the Minister directed for stopping washing of Vehicles on road sides and River Bank contaminating the water bodies.

Earlier, the Minister visited various schools in the Pahalgam vicinity and directed the concerned officials to strengthen the existing infrastructure in schools.

Later, the Minister also convened a public meeting to interact with the local tourism stockholders and gave patient hearing to the grievances and issues raised by them.

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Srinagar, May 16(KMW): Militant outfit Lashkar-e-Taiba, has firmly asserted that cease-fire is no option and no thought can be given on such compromise.

“We deem it as sin and disgrace to the sacrifices put up in the freedom struggle. We are the heirs of the martyrs. Opting for such choice is treachery to blood of martyrs and there is no disgrace as such,” LeT Chief Mehmood Shah said in a statement to news agency CNS .

Shah said that the statement of India’s interior minister is nothing but a drama. “It may be a wish of India and its few sympathizers and nothing else. Bipin Rawat is of the opinion that he may threaten the Kashmiris by imposing atrocities on unarmed students. It has neither happened before nor will it happen now. We were active in the resistance before and so we will be in future.”

Mahmood Shah said that we are in favor of negotiations but the talks of negotiations in presence of armed occupational forces in the region are lies.

Mahmood Shah said that whole of Jihad Council is convinced on the leadership of Syed Salahuddin. “Our mothers are supporting us by picking up the guns and we can never betray their trust. This indigenous freedom struggle is supported by the pure blood of martyrs and we can never let anyone betray it. We vow to the people that we will never betray their trust and the immense sacrifices they have gone through in the freedom struggle. We will fight to the last of our blood in our struggle against illegal occupation. India shall soon witness the wrath of the people. We will continue the armed struggle until and unless Jammu Kashmir had won its freedom.”

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Shopian, May 16(KMW) :An encounter has started in Jamnagri area of Shopian District.

The operation in the area has been launched by Amy’s 55 RR , CRPF and Jammu Kashmir police.

Earlier a search party of Government Forces was fired upon by Militants which triggered an encounter.

Meanwhile, Clashes have broken out near the encounter site .

Three Militants are said to be trapped in the area.

Details awaited.

14

New Delhi, May 16(KMW): The central government on Wednesday announced a ceasefire in Jammu and Kashmir during Ramadan, saying this was necessary to help “peace loving Muslims” observe the holy month in a peaceful environment.

A Home Ministry statement said that security forces had been told not to launch operations in Jammu and Kashmir during the holy month.

The decision was taken “to help the peace loving Muslims observe Ramzan in a peaceful environment”, it said.

Home Minister Rajnath Singh conveyed the decision to Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, who had made an appeal for a Ramadan ceasefire in the state on May 9.

But the statement said that security forces would reserve the right to retaliate if attacked or if it was essential to protect the lives of innocent people.

“Government expects everyone to cooperate in this initiative and help the Muslim brothers and sisters to observe Ramzan peacefully and without any difficulties.

“It is important to isolate the forces that bring a bad name to Islam by resorting to mindless violence and terror,” it said.

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SRINAGAR, MAY 15(KMW): Chief Minister, Mehbooba Mufti today announced release of Rs. One crore each in respect of all the MLAs of Srinagar District for rebuilding social infrastructure in their constituencies even as the District Capex Plan has been pegged at Rs. 149.54 crore for 2018-19.

Chairing the District Development Board meeting of Srinagar district here today, the Chief Minister also announced release of Rs. five crore to be kept at the disposal of SKIMS for establishing a Cancer Centre there. A similar release of Rs. five crore would be made for Jammu for establishing a Cancer Centre there as well, the Chief Minister announced. She also directed earmarking Rs. 10 crore for constructing Community Halls in various parts of the city, particularly Shehre Khaas.

Ministers, Syed Altaf Bukhari, Javed Ahmad Mir, Muhammad Ashraf Mir, Asiea Naqash; legislators, Ali Muhammad Sagar, Mubarak Gul, Shamima Firdous, Noor Muhammad, Moulvi Abid Ansari, Ishfaq Jabbar, Khursheed Alam and Anjum Fazili were present in the meeting.

Mehbooba Mufti directed the officers to undertake repair of lanes, drains, macadamisation of roads and strengthening of power distribution system in the Srinagar city, particularly Shehre Khaas, on priority adding that the allocations of Rs. One crore each be utilized for pacing up these works. She said there is a need for developing more parks and green spaces in the city and till the Smart city project kicks off these interventions should be made on priority.

The Chief Minister also directed immediate operationalisation of Radpora stadium and identifying a patch of land at Iddgah for establishing a children’s park there. She also directed completion of heritage gate by Tourism Department at Iddgah for which she asked the IGP Kashmir zone to sort out issues with CRPF. She also asked the Health Department to explore the possibility of shifting the shopkeepers at Gousia hospital to a nearby complexl and use that space for hospital activities.

The meeting was informed that five bridges are being commissioned in the city soon besides two each schemes under CRF and NABARD. Also an expert team from New Delhi is coming to Srinagar to survey the need for establishment of grade separators at various spots in the city to arrest the traffic congestion.

Besides, the meeting was informed that Cluster University, Srinagar and SPS Library complex at M A Road are almost ready for operationalization and two colleges at Zakura and Bagh i Dilawar Khan would be inaugurated by year end. Besides work on additional blocks at LD Hospital is on and a project for Rs. 19 crore has been projected for compensating the relocation of shopkeepers coming in the construction of Mini Secretariat, Batmaloo.

The Chief Minister directed to look into the causes of cost escalation of projects and check this unhealthy trend so that projects are not left midway for paucity of funds.

The meeting was also informed that projects worth Rs. 65 crore are under execution in Sports and other youth activities in the district.

The meeting was informed that to tide over the problem of dispruption in power supply the capacity of grid stations is being enhanced besides commissioning some new grid stations. Alastaing Grid station, the meeting was informed, is expected to be commissioned by October this year along the commissioning of Srinagar-Kargil-Leh transmission line. Also work on grid stations at Bagh i Ali Mardan Khan and Tengpora is going to be started shortly.

Also, the meeting was informed, the existing grid stations in the Srinagar city would be expanded in capacity by addition of more transformers to tide over the problem of frequent power cuts, low voltage and other issues. These measures on completion are expected to give major relief to people in coming winter from power disruptions.

Mehbooba Mufti asked the Chief Secretary to monitor the pace of work and capacity enhancement on these grid stations regularly so that these are operationalized before the onset of winter this year. She also directed the Divisional Kashmir, Kashmir to sort out the issues of land acquisition coming in the way of construction of some of these grid stations.

Later, the board approved an enhanced outlay of Rs. 149.54 crore for the district for 2018-19.

Chief Secretary, B B Vyas; Financial Commissioner, Housing & Urban Development Department, K B Aggarwal; administrative secretaries of all the Departments; Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir, Baseer Ahmad Khan; IGP Kashmir zone, S P Pani; heads of all the Departments; officers of Divisional and District administration were present in the meeting.

EDITORTIAL