KNO - Kashmir News Observer Evening Bulletin | KNO

KNO - Kashmir News Observer Evening Bulletin | KNO

Kashmir News Observer (KNO)

Braid Chopping fallout: 

No let up in protests and clashes 

Srinagar, Oct 16 : With no let up in braid chopping incidents in Kashmir Valley, protests spark in many parts while life was paralyzed for several hours in Sopore and Pampore areas of Northern and Southern parts of Valley on Monday

      Reports said that youth enforced a shutdown and pelted stones on shops and vehicles in North Kashmir’s Sopore town after a fresh braid chopping incident. 

    Reports said that a woman of Ningli area of Sopore, in her fifties, said unknown persons chopped off her braid. This is the third such incident in the area in less than twenty-four hours.

On Sunday, two women said their braids were chopped off by unknown persons.

Reports said that youth took to streets and pelted the forces deployed in the town with stones.

They also enforced shutdown in the town by hurling rocks at the shops and vehicles. However, life returned to normal after a couple of hours while shopkeepers opened up their shops and transport plied normally. 

    Protesters here in South Kashmir, blocked Srinagar-Jammu highway near Awantipora, demanding arrest of culprits involved in braid chopping incidents. Eyewitnesses told news agency CNS that police rushed to spot to pacify the protesters who alleged that police have failed to nab the culprits so far. The protesters according to reports dispersed peacefully after getting assurances from police. 

     Eyewitnesses said that scores of students from Islamia College Hawal here in Srinagar city clashed with government forces after they hit to roads and staged protest against increasing braid chopping incidents. 

      Police used tear-smoke shelling to disperse the protesting students. The clashes disrupted vehicular movement on the roads for some time. Students alleged that government has not take been taking the braid chopping issue seriously while police have been making no efforts to trace the criminals involved in such acts. 

     Protesting students also raised pro-freedom slogans. 

    Clashes also erupted in Habakadal area of Srinagar city where protesters pelted stones on government forces who retaliated with tear-smoke shelling. Normal life was affected due to clashes and protests. Protesters were demanding the arrest of braid choppers. They alleged that braid choppers are people working for security agencies. 

     The life was disrupted in Maisuma locality of Srinagar city as well after protests and clashes against continuous braid chopping incidents. Shopkeepers lowered their shutters even in city centre Lal Chowk and Residency Road. 

    Police used pellets and tear-smoke shells to disperse rock hurling protesters. The clashes created panic in the area. A couple of persons including a photo journalist Suhail Ahmed was wounded. Suhail suffered pellet injuries. 

     Reports from South Kashmir’s Pulwama district said that two fresh braid chopping incidents were reported from Nikus and Dangarpora villages of the district. The fresh incidents created fear psychosis among people. 

   Pertinently, over a 100 incidents of braid chopping have occurred in different parts of Kashmir Valley during the past month while police is still clueless.

    The victims have told their families and police that unknown persons cut their hair after knocking them unconscious with some spray.

The police have formed Special Investigation Teams to probe the incidents. However, so far the police and the authorities have been clueless.

The police have announced a reward of Rs six lakh for credible information leading to arrest of any person behind braid chopping incidents. So far, no arrests have been made.

At several places, vigilante mobs have thrashed innocents mistaking them for braid choppers. 




Braid Chopping:

‘A conspiracy to suppress true sentiments of people of Kashmir: Farooq Abdullah 

Srinagar, Oct 16 : Reacting over unabated braid chopping incidents here in Kashmir Valley, National Conference President Dr Farooq Abdullah said that these conspiracies were hatched in past as well to suppress the true sentiments of people. 

      He appealed people to get united to expose the criminals indulging in such acts. “This is a conspiracy to suppress the sentiments of people of Kashmir. This conspiracy has been hatched to harass common people who have already witnessed hell in Valley,” Farooq Abdullah said. 

      He said it is a direct attack on the dignity and honour of our sisters, daughters and mothers. “This is unacceptable to us and we ought to get united to expose the elements behind it,” Farooq Abdullah said.



Braid-chopping: No lie-detector tests of victims: IGP Munir Khan

Three arrested militants presented before Reporters 

Srinagar, Oct 16 : Police on Monday presented three alleged militants before reporters during a joint press conference organized by local police, Army and Para-military Central Reserve Police Force.

   While seeking information from general public about the alleged bank robbers, Inspector General of Police, Kashmir Zone, Munir Ahmed Khan said that police arrested two militants who tried to snatch rifles from security personnel guarding protected persons. 

     Addressing a press conference here in Srinagar city, Munir Ahmed Khan said that two militants with an intention to snatch rifles from PSO’s of protected persons in Kund Qazigund village of South Kashmir’s Kulgam district fired some rounds to scare PSO’s and the inhabitants of the area, but had to make a retreat after hue and cry raised by people. 

    “After this incident, joint nake by Army, Police and CRPF were established and two militants identified as Khurshid Ahmed Dar and Haziq Ahmed Rather both residents of Supat Kulgam were apprehended who were riding on a motor cycle. A pistol with live ammunition and a live grenade was recovered from them. A case vide FIR number 275/2017 under section 307, 120B was registered against the duo,” IGP said.

     The IGP also said that they also managed to arrest a militant involved in an attack on the cavalcade of R&B Minister Nayeem Akhtar. 

     “On 21 September last month, a grenade was hurled on the cavalcade of R&B Minister leading to the death of three civilians and injuries to 30 others. 

    “Immediately after the incident, a manhunt was started to nab the militants involved. A suspect namely Gulzar Ahmed Dar son of Ghulam Nabi of Nagbal Tral was apprehended who later on confessed to be involved in the incident,” Khan said added that the arrested militant is affiliated with Jaish-e-Muhammad while a pistol with ammunition was recovered from him. 

     All the three militants were presented before the reporters during the press conference. 

    IGP also talked about the two recent bank robberies, which took place at Mirhama Bijbehara and Ratnipora Shopian in South Kashmir’s Anantang and Shopian districts. 

    “The militants involved in these robberies are Rasik Nabi Bhat alias Owaise of Nowdal, Kirmana Mohalla Tral, Salia Muhammad Akhoon alias Rehan of Arampora Gorikadal Medora Tral, Muhammad Abad Bhat of Mantribugh, Ishfaq Ahmed Thokar of Paddarpora and Zubir Turrey of Shopian,” he said and asked people to help the police in nabbing these militants. 

    While responding to a question, IGP, Munir Khan ruled out the lie-detector or polygraph testing of the braid-chopping victims in the Valley.

He said scientific examination of the victims would be conducted.

“We will collect samples to know what type of sprays have been used on the victims,” Khan said. 

     He was flanked by Army and CRPF officers including Sachin Malik and Zulfqar Hasan. SP Awantipora Muhammad Zahid and SP Kulgam Sridhar Patil were also present during the presser. 




Traders resent government move of constructing a Marriage Hall in the heart of busy Gonikhan market

Srinagar, Oct 16 : The traders’ community has resented the government move to construct a Marriage Hall in the heart of the bustling Gonikhan market here in Srinagar city. The traders have said that this will deprive them from parking space and furthermore, they will face enormous hardships during marriage season. 

     Srinagar Development Authority (SDA) has started work on the construction of a Marriage Hall at Bandook Chawani area of Gonikahn market. “It is not only the violation of Master Plan but also a move that will affect business of the traders. How can a Marriage Hall be constructed in a commercial and busy area like Gonikhan,” said a group of traders to news agency CNS. 

     They said that the Marriage Hall will prove nuisance more than an asset. “It was better for government to create a parking lot instead of Marriage Hall, given the fact that meager population resides in the vicinity. Majority of the people have sold off their houses that owners have turned them into business houses now. We don’t find any logic in setting up a Marriage Hall in the area,” said a trader.

     Vice Chairman, Srinagar Development Authority Abdul Majid Raina told CNS that Marriage Hall is being constructed on the demand of people. “They used to close the roads in marriage seasons and to give public a breather we took this measure,” he said adding that land on which Hall is being constructed is owned by SDA. 

     “It will cost up to Rs 2 Crore and I don’t think it will affect business in the area,” Raina said. 



Aga Hasan leads procession to commemorate martyrdom of Imam Zain-ul-Abideen (RA)

Srinagar, Oct 16 : Anjuman Shari Shian organized a mourning procession in Shalimar area of Srinagar city to commemorate the martyrdom anniversary of Hazrat Imam Zain-ul-Abideen (RA). Thousands of mourners participated in the procession that was led by senior separatist leader and president Anjuman Shari Shian Aga Syed Hasan Almosvi Alsafvi.

      After the culmination of noon prayers at Zainab Park Shalimar, Aga Syed Hasan addressed tens and thousands of mourners. He talked in length about martyrdom of Hazrat Imam Zain-ul-Abideen (RA). He also threw light on life and teachings of Imam Hussain (AS) and asked people to follow the path and teachings of Islam. “The martyrs of Karbala have set an example before us through their deeds, which will remain till the last day of this world,” he said. He also prayed for the whole Muslim Ummah for their religious peace, unity and integrity.

    He said that Imam Zain-ul-Abideen (RA) showed us a path that we ought to follow. “His serene character, boldness and spirituality made him eternal. This name will live till eternity,” he said. 

     Aga Syed Hasan also condemned United States president Donald Trumps recent statement with regard to Iran-US nuclear deal and said that anti-Muslim US can’t break the resolve of people of Iran and its government. 



Detention of militant’s brother sparked protest at IUST 

Pulwama, Oct 16 : The detention of a Student, who happens to be the brother of an active militant sparked protest at Islamic University of Science and Technology Awantipora on Monday.

     Scores of students assembled at University Campus and demanded immediate release of the detained student. 

    The protesting students said that Junaid Akhoon, pursuing diploma in Polytechnic college of the IUST was arrested by police from his house at Aarampora village in Awantipora area of South Kashmir’s Pulwama district. 

 “We protest against the high-handedness of forces. The forces are harassing innocent students without any reason,” said the protesting students.

Officials at the IUST informed that they have taken up the issue with the authorities.

    Pertinently, the detained student is the brother of active militant Salia Muhammad Akhoon. Salia according to police is involved in a bank robbery incident that took place at Ratnipora area of South Kashmir’s Shopian district.



Mehbooba felicitates people on urs of Hazrat Sheikh ul Aalam

Srinagar, Oct 16 : Chief Minister, Mehbooba Mufti has felicitated people on the annual urs of Hazrat Sheikh ul Aalam Sheikh Noor-ud-din Wali (RA) being observed today.

In her message, the Chief Minister described Hazrat Sheikh-ul-Aalam as the fountainhead of spirituality, amity and brotherhood in the State. She said the revered saint preached eternal values of Islam through his famed poetry, which is held in high esteem by every citizen of the State.

Mehbooba Mufti said the dire need of present times is to go back to the teachings of Hazrat Sheikh ul Aalam which provide a guiding force to the humanity.

The Chief Minister has directed the Divisional and district administrations to ensure providing all adequate facilities to the devotees visiting the shrines of Sheikh-ul-Aalam at Chrar-e-Sharief and other places during the Urs days.

Finance Department for speeding-up expenditure to meet time-lines

Srinagar, Oct 16, CNS: The Finance Department has called for expediting the pace of expenditure by the Government Departments in view of early release of funds this fiscal in pursuance to the announcement by the Finance Minister, Dr Haseeb Drabu in his budget speech in the State Legislature January this year.

The Finance Minister had, in his budget speech, announced a slew of measures aimed at streamlining the expenditure with systematic spending initiatives as a first step towards bringing economic stability in the State.

"In view of the timely release of funds to the line departments for the current fiscal, in February 2017, by the Finance and Planning & Development Departments, there is absolutely no reason that balanced pace of expenditure should not be ensured by all the departments," said an order issued today by the Principal Secretary Finance, Navin Kumar Choudhary.

Pertinently, as a major expenditure reform initiative aimed at streamlining and speeding up spending in the Government Departments, the Finance Department had for the first time in the fiscal history of J&K released 50% of the current year's budget allocation to all the Departments in February 2017 well in advance to ensure timely execution of the developmental works.

According to the order issued today, the decision conveyed in February 2017 itself is reiterated again that expenditure during the last quarter of the financial year 2017-18 shall be limited to 30% budget allocation on both Revenue and Capex side.

"All the un-utilized funds over and above 30% of the budgeted amount on both Revenue and Capex side as on 3I December 2017 shall be automatically forfeited and will not be allowed to be used for any other purposes," the order said adding that, as has been made clear in the Govt Order No: 28-F of 2017 dated: 08-02-2017, the expenditure should not be more 15% of the budget estimates in the month of March 2018.

The order further reiterated that all powers related to re-appropriation and re-distribution of funds vested in the Administrative Departments, HoDS and DDOs stand withdrawn and any proposal for re-appropriation will be considered on merits in the Finance Department only in respect of savings to be utilized for authorized pending work done liabilities, salary shortfalls etc.

Payments in the last month shall be made only for goods and services already procured. No amounts shall be released in advance except in cases of advance payments to contractors under terms of duly executed contracts so that Government would not renege on its legal or contractual obligations, any loans or advances to Government servants etc or private individuals as a measure of relief and rehabilitation as per service conditions or on compassionate grounds and any other exceptional case with the approval of the Finance Department.

The order said that the rush of expenditure on procurement should be avoided during the last month of the financial year so as to ensure that all procedures are complied with and there is no infructuous or wasteful expenditure. The Director Finance/Financial Advisors have been asked to specially monitor this aspect in their respective departments.

"Proposals of Advance Drawal, Revalidation, Authorization etc. if any, pertaining to Financial Year 2017-18 shall be submitted to the Finance Department well before 28 February 2018. No such proposal shall be entertained by the Finance Department after 28 February 201 8," it said adding that the proposals for parking of money in "Civil Deposits" in order to avoid lapsing of funds shall not be entertained and processed. "Issuance of Hundies stands already banned. The Departments are advised not to move any proposal in this regard.

Treasury Offices will not entertain any bill/cheque for payment after working hours on 29 March 2018, pertaining to the Financial Year 2017-18 and all the DDOs have been asked to plan their bill presentations accordingly at treasury.

"Under no circumstances, any Bill in respect of Financial Year 2017-18 will be received in the Treasuries on the last two working days of financial year i.e. 30 and 31 March 2018, the date on which only payments will be made and accounts reconciled," it said adding that the Administrative Secretaries must effectively supervise and shall be responsible for ensuring compliance of these fiscal measures.

"Financial Advisors shall assist the respective Departments in securing compliance with these measures and also submit regular report to the Department of Finance," the order said.


DIPR, Commercial Taxes Deptt to organize workshop on GST for newspaper managements

Srinagar, Oct 16 : To address the issues pertaining to the settlement of advertisement bills of the newspapers following implementation of Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime, the Department of Information & Public Relations in collaboration with the Commercial Taxes Department, J&K is organising a Special Workshop at the Auditorium of the Media Complex, Polo View, Srinagar on 21st October 2017 at 11.00 am.

In the Workshop the officers and experts of the Commercial Taxes Department would address the concerns and queries of the media owners, editors and advertising & marketing executives of these publications regarding the settlement of advertisement bills under the GST regime.

The newspaper managements of in Kashmir are accordingly requested to depute their staff dealing with Accounts and Advertisements for the said Workshop.

Pertinently, last month a similar workshop was organized by DIPR and Commercial Taxes Department for newspaper managements in Jammu.



Non-Gazetted employees of DIPR constitute Employees Welfare Union

Fayaz Ahmad elected President of the welfare union

Srinagar, Oct 16 :  The employees of Department of Information and Public Relations, J&K Government today held a first general body meeting for the welfare of the non-gazetted employees of the department.

        The meeting was convened to discuss various issues pertaining to the welfare of the non-gazetted employees of the department. The body unanimously decided to constitute welfare body for the department and in this regard Mr. Fayaz Ahmad Bhat, Section Officer, Directorate of Information was elected President of the Welfare Union followed by Mr. Shabir Ahmad Bhat, Information Assistant as Vice President, Mr. Z. A. Guru, Assistant Editor Films as General Secretary, Mr. Suresh Kumar, Jr. Assistant, Secretary while Mr. J. L. Raina as Publicity Secretary of the Union. Mr. Farooq Abdullah as Cashier and Mr. M. Sultan Bhat as Observer from Directorate. Further, Mr. Bilal Ahmad Rather, Commentrator, Field Publicity Unit, Joint Directorate of Information, Kashmir was unanimously elected as Spokesman of the Union.

The body also decided to elect Mr. Rouf Ahmad Sofi, as Observer from Joint Directorate of Information, Kashmir while Mr. Pritpal Singh was elected as Observer from Joint Directorate of Information, Jammu. The body unanimously decided to elect Mr. Sheikh Saleem Reporter as representative from Stringers (Reporters/Translators) while Syed Ather was elected as representative from Stringer (Cameramen).

        The General body also decided to nominate office bearers of Kashmir Division namely M. Shafi Dar, Altaf Ahmad Bhat, Mukhtar Ahmad Beigh, Muneer Ahmad Munir and from Jammu Division Raju Sharma and Rahul Khajuria as office bearers. From District Headquarters Tariq Ahmad Mir, Mr. Yaqoob and Atta Mohammad were nominated as office bearers.

A threadbare discussion was held on several issues and some decisions were taken in the meeting regarding welfare of the employees of the department.