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THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

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J A M M U   &   K A S H M I R    E D I T I O N

Govt to open graft cases: Farooq
Jammu, March 15
Sending a clear signal to the corrupt politicians, bureaucrats and other officers that their days of happiness were limited, former Chief Minister and president of NC Farooq Abdullah today said the government would soon open all files of corruption cases.
NC chief Farooq Abdullah pays homage to the state’s first Prime Minister and India’s first Chief justice, Mehar Chand Mahajan, in Jammu NC chief Farooq Abdullah pays homage to the state’s first Prime Minister and India’s first Chief justice, Mehar Chand Mahajan, in Jammu on Sunday. Tribune photo: Anand Sharma

State ‘ignoring’ historical monuments
Leh, March 15
Centuries-old monuments in Ladakh, which are in pathetic condition, are ignored by the state authorities. The state government has not declared any of these monuments as state protected, despite many of them already declared as national and international protected monuments.

Desilting of Ranbir Canal mere eyewash
Jammu, March 15
Once known as the lifeline of Jammu for its pure water, the Ranbir Canal, which caters to irrigation needs of the large number of farmers in the Jammu region, now stands testimony to the official apathy and rampant pollution.
Labourers dump mud and garbage taken out from the Ranbir canal on its bank Labourers dump mud and garbage taken out from the Ranbir canal on its bank. A Tribune photograph




YOUR TOWN
Jammu
Srinagar




EARLIER STORIES



BJP workers stage protest
Move to nominate samiti leaders for LS
Jammu, March 15
The discontentment among BJP party workers over strong speculation of nominating advocate Leela Karan Sharma, former convener, Shri Amarnath Yatra Sangharsh Samiti (SAYSS) for the Jammu-Poonch Lok Sabha (LS) seat, and Jatinder Singh, senior leader, SAYSS, Doda-Udhampur constituency, has come to the fore.
BJP supporters protest in Jammu on Sunday against the move to nominate Amarnath Yatra Sangharsh Samiti leaders for the LS poll
BJP supporters protest in Jammu on Sunday against the move to nominate Amarnath Yatra Sangharsh Samiti leaders for the LS poll. Photo: Inderjeet Singh

Insurance Co not liable for death of gratuitous passenger: HC
Jammu, March 15
Justice Hakim Imtiaz Hussain of the J&K High Court of Judicature in an important decision held that the Insurance Company is not liable for the death or injuries to person/s travelling in a goods carrier.

Displaced families facing hardship
Assar (Ramban), March 15
Concerned over the future of his family, fear looms large over the face of Abdul Gani Shan, who has lost everything, including shelter and source of livelihood as his agricultural land and home were acquired by the authorities to construct alternative road to connect Doda and Kishtwar districts with rest of the country.

Hilarious play ‘ Doctor Palta ’ written by Balwant Gargi and directed by Balwant Thakur is presented in Natrang’s weekly theatre show in Jammu
Hilarious play ‘ Doctor Palta ’ written by Balwant Gargi and directed by Balwant Thakur is presented in Natrang’s weekly theatre show in Jammu on Sunday. Set in a small town of Punjab in the late sixties, the play is a contemporary satire depicting the early struggle of professionals in establishing their businesses. Tribune photo

Nazool land occupants seek amendment to Roshni Act
Jammu, March 15
Forum of Occupants of Nazool Land (FONL) has appreciated Finance Minister Abdul Rahim Rather’s statement on occupancy of the state land vis-ŕ-vis the ownership rights.

J&K Bank widens ambit of sops for exporters
Srinagar, March 15
Extending the ambit of its relief and rehabilitation package to exporters of the state, Jammu and Kashmir Bank has decided to provide interest relief to local ones in the wake of meltdown in the global markets.

Baglihar ‘not eligible’ for carbon credits
Jammu, March 15
The Jammu and Kashmir State Power Development Corporation (JKSPDC) today said the 450 MW Baglihar Hydro-Electric Project was not eligible for seeking carbon credits under the Kyoto Protocol signed by India as the project was started much before the Protocol came into place.

Three years on, school building not rebuilt
Poonch, March 15
Three years after the building of Government Primary School, Phagwari, in the Mandi area, collapsed due to strong winds and heavy rainfall, the government is yet to repair it, forcing students to study in open. They have to wind up their studies during rainy days with no school building.

NC blames Mufti for erosion of special status
Srinagar, March 15
The ruling NC has blamed opposition PDP patron Mufti Mohammad Sayeed for playing “politics on the issues like autonomy” saying the former Chief Minister was involved in “dismantling the strong edifice of special status”.

Lashkar help held with hawala money
Jammu, March 15
A financial coordinator of the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) was arrested and Rs 50,000 in hawala money seized from his possession in Rajouri district, police sources said here.

23 injured in accident
Udhampur, March 15
At least 23 passengers were injured when a vehicle rolled into a deep gorge near Mahore in Reasi district. Five injured have been shifted to a Reasi hospital with others undergoing treatment at Mahore.

Army contains forest fire
Rajouri, March 15
A few days after the fire reached near three villages--Kanga Gali, Panjni and forward Balakote-- along the LoC in this district, local sources said the Army had managed to prevent the fire from spreading to this side in the Dabbi forest area.

Pak intruder shot dead
Jammu, March 15
The BSF late last night gunned down a Pakistani intruder while trying to infiltrate into India. According to deputy commandant S. Balasubramaniam, BSF jawans deployed at the Kotkuba border outpost in RS Pura sector found a Pakistani intruder moving towards the fence.

School annual day
Jammu, March 15
Heritage School, Jammu, celebrated its annual sports day on Sunday in which Minister for Industries and commerce, labour and Rural Development S.S. Salathia was the chief guest.

Sadhavi Ritambhra for universal civil code
Rehari, March 15
Sadhavi Ritambhra, firebrand leader, who came to attend the congregation of religious Hindu leaders at Rehari in Jammu, urged people to vote for those candidates who can protect the Indian culture and sovereignty.

Programme for entrepreneurship
Srinagar March 15
The Jammu and Kashmir Entrepreneurship Development Institute, under the Prime Minister’s Employment Generation Programme, started a two-week programme in Pulwama on Saturday.

One held on murder charge
Srinagar March 15
The police has solved within 12 hours the murder case of class IV student whose body was found from a jungle in Pahalgam (Anantnag).

2 houses, 2 shops gutted
Udhampur, March 15
Two houses and two shops were gutted in devastating fires that broke out in Kishtwar and Udhampur districts late on Saturday night.





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Govt to open graft cases: Farooq
Tejinder Singh Sodhi
Tribune News Service

Jammu, March 15
Sending a clear signal to the corrupt politicians, bureaucrats and other officers that their days of happiness were limited, former Chief Minister and president of NC Farooq Abdullah today said the government would soon open all files of corruption cases.

“During the previous regime, corruption was rampant in the state, and in the upcoming days the government would open all such files to make the Jammu and Kashmir a corruption free state,” Farooq said during a function organised to celebrate the 119th birth anniversary of the first Prime Minister of Jammu and Kashmir and the first chief justice of the independent India, Mehar ChandMahajan.

He said anyone who was found indulged in corrupt practices would be severely punished, “No body would be spared and various big fishes, who had been indulged in corruption cases would also be exposed.” Farooq Said. He said crores of rupees were granted by the Centre to undertake various developmental schemes in the state, however he blames that all amount was embezzled and nothing on the ground level was done.

“Government of India had given a package for the uplift of the handloom industry in the state. To make sure that the handloom products from the state are exported to other countries, but the person who got the contract has not sent a single consignment abroad.”

Farooq said Omar might have to face various hardships in upcoming days to eradicate corruption from the state. Farooq also made it clear that the government would not indulge in any sort of political vendetta, but would expose the genuine corruption cases.

Holding the previous Peoples Democratic Party regime responsible for corrupt practices, Farooq said, “During their tenure they undertook a project to electrify 75,000 panchayat ghars in the state, however less than 3,000 were electrified and rest of the amount was embezzled as we majority of these panchayat ghars do not exist in the state.”

Without naming the PDP and the BJP Farooq said, “The political parties which divided the state on the Amarnath land row agitation; in which so much of innocent blood was lost have now joined hands.”

He appealed the youth, especially women, to come forward and take part in politics so as to empower themselves and the community.

Earlier, the members of the Mahajan Sabha put forth their demands in front of the former CM, who assured them, that he would take up the issue at the appropriate level to redress their grievances.

Various other dignitaries were also present on the occasion.

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State ‘ignoring’ historical monuments
Yangchan Dolma

Leh, March 15
Centuries-old monuments in Ladakh, which are in pathetic condition, are ignored by the state authorities. The state government has not declared any of these monuments as state protected, despite many of them already declared as national and international protected monuments.

The Centre declared 13 monuments, which also included Buddhist stone sculpture of Mulbik village of Kargil district, as national protected monuments. Not only these, two Buddhist monasteries of the region are also declared as world’s endangered site by the New York-based World Monuments Fund.

Almost all monuments found in Ladakh belong to Buddhist serving for centuries and unique in the state as well as in the country with distinct characters in arts and paintings.

Tsering Nurboo, who was one of the four-member team constituted by the Ladakh Buddhist Association to identify the monuments in the region said, “ during the survey conducted in 2007, we found that many of the monuments which were located near the construction site were in pathetic condition. While adding that those located in the villages were better maintained by the villagers.”

In Leh town, many monuments, including stupas, are also in worse condition. In summer, they are stinking with bad smell and in winter it remained freeze with sewage of residents of the colony. Manay walls are believed erected by the kings of Ladakh either in memory or to punish the defaulters.

Also, encroachment over the monuments by constructors is also taking place at large scale.

LBA president Stob said, “many Manay walls in the Leh markets of the town have disappeared during construction.”

However, for the first time, district archives departments are conducting the identification of monuments of the region.

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Desilting of Ranbir Canal mere eyewash
Tejinder Singh Sodhi
Tribune News Service

Jammu, March 15
Once known as the lifeline of Jammu for its pure water, the Ranbir Canal, which caters to irrigation needs of the large number of farmers in the Jammu region, now stands testimony to the official apathy and rampant pollution.

Every year before releasing the water in the canal, which is an offshoot of Chenab River, the state government takes an uphill task to de-silt it and remove pollutants from the bed of the canal. However, this time the contractors, who have been assigned to de-silt the canal, have been dumping mud and garbage in the bank of the canal.

Residents who live near the canal rue that the government seems to be noncommittal in cleaning the canal to restore its past pristine glory.

“The project to de-silt the canal is just an eyewash; the contractors are busy removing the silt deposited in the canal,” Pawan Kumar of Satwari, Jammu, said.

He said: “People in the far off villages use this water for drinking purpose, washing clothes and utensils. However, the canal is so much polluted that an epidemic can break anytime.”

The main canal is 60 km in length while its distribution system spans over 400 km. It has a gross command area of 1.67 lakh acre and cultivable command area of 95,400 acre.

The modernisation work of the Ranbir Canal was initiated in 1981-82 at an estimated cost of Rs 84.40 crore, and since then an amount of Rs 117 crore has been spent, but still the canal is no better than dirty nallah.

Every year lakhs of tonnes of garbage is dumped inside the canal and the government spends crores of rupees to de-silt the canal, but the contractors, who employ labourers, to do the job dump the garbage in the canal bank.

“The de-silting work on the canal is going on for the past few days, and what we have been observing that the labourers only clean the banks of the canal and dump the silt and other garbage in the canal bank,” Ajay Kumar, an environmentalist, said.

He said: “This practice is just an eyewash to show the government that the contractors are doing their work properly. However, when the water gets releases the garbage would flow into the fields and would not only destroy the standing crops, but would make the land barren.”

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BJP workers stage protest
Move to nominate samiti leaders for LS

Seema Sharma
Tribune News Service

Jammu, March 15
The discontentment among BJP party workers over strong speculation of nominating advocate Leela Karan Sharma, former convener, Shri Amarnath Yatra Sangharsh Samiti (SAYSS) for the Jammu-Poonch Lok Sabha (LS) seat, and Jatinder Singh, senior leader, SAYSS, Doda-Udhampur constituency, has come to the fore. The workers staged a protest against nominating people from outside at the party headquarter at Kachi Chavni today afternoon. The silence of the senior leaders about the whole matter has not helped much, with the Leela Karan shouting from the rooftop about ‘his talk with the national BJP leaders’ for the LS seat being quite positive. This has precisely created ripples among party workers.

Spilling the beans to larger extent, BJP spokesperson Ramesh Arora said, “the BJP is all set to sacrifice its interests of nominating people from within the party in view of the larger interest of Jammu. Both Leela Karan and Jatinder are highly educated people who have been the face of Amarnath Land dispute in Jammu. With their selection, we will be able to fight the issue of delimitation and discrimination of Jammu in much better way.” For the protests which might escalate in coming days, he said, “The way BJP supported Ashok Vijay Gupta, candidate from outside the party fold, for Rajya Sabha seat, we can opt same criterior for LS seat as well. These protests will subside down in few days.”

Ashok Khajuria, state president, BJP, who is busy travelling to and from Jammu to Delhi, for round of meetings with National BJP leaders to solve the issue of discontentment and final names of candidates for LS election seemed irked over the protests and reacted saying, “It is not the BJP workers but people from opposition parties who are staging the protest.” He denied the claim of Leela Karan Sharma for getting the BJP support for the LS seat.

In the entire ruckus, Nirmal Singh, former State President of BJP, who was considered to be in reckoning for the LS seat, has not lost the hope yet as he said, “The party high command is still mulling over the issue and, has not yet finalised the names, so I hope the party will certainly take care of the sentiments and aspiration of its workers before making any final announcement over the issue.”

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Insurance Co not liable for death of gratuitous passenger: HC
Legal Correspondent

Jammu, March 15
Justice Hakim Imtiaz Hussain of the J&K High Court of Judicature in an important decision held that the Insurance Company is not liable for the death or injuries to person/s travelling in a goods carrier.

One Atma Singh Rana lodged a claim petition before the Motor Accidents Claims Tribunal stating that he sustained 15 per cent injuries while travelling in a truck (No. JKQ-5559), which met with an accident on May 25, 1996 on the Jammu-Srinagar National Highway.

During pendency of proceedings, Atma Singh died and his legal representatives were brought on record. However, the claim petition was dismissed on the ground that the injured was not entitled to any compensation as he was travelling as a gratuitous passenger in the offending truck, and the death of original claimant was not caused because of the injuries received and that there had been no loss to the estate left behind by the injured.

Feeling aggrieved by the dismissal of claim petition, the legal representatives assailed the findings of Tribunal on various grounds before the High Court of J&K.

The HC while dismissing the appeal observed that “The injured was gratuitous passenger travelling in offending vehicle and that the Motor Vehicles Act does not enjoin any statutory liability on the owner to insure any passenger/s travelling in a goods carrier. The Tribunal has found that the Insurance Co. has no liability for the death or injury to passenger travelling gratuitously or unauthorisedly in a goods carrier.

The HC observed that “A claim petition under the Section 166 of the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988, filed by a person injured in a motor vehicle accident, for the compensation of personal injuries, expenses, loss of income abates with the death of such person provided that the death does not occur due to such injuries but such a petition would sustain and may be prosecuted by his/her legal representatives, if it relates to loss to the estate of deceased due to bodily injuries sustained in such accident. Since on consideration of first ground the main Claim Petition was found not sustainable, in such circumstances, this appeal fails and is therefore dismissed.”

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Displaced families facing hardship
Dinesh Manhotra
Tribune News Service

Assar (Ramban), March 15
Concerned over the future of his family, fear looms large over the face of Abdul Gani Shan, who has lost everything, including shelter and source of livelihood as his agricultural land and home were acquired by the authorities to construct alternative road to connect Doda and Kishtwar districts with rest of the country.

While acquiring land from 12 families of Trungal area, the authorities had promised to provide alternative arrangements and adequate compensations, but these promises are yet not fulfilled. Being uprooted from native place, these displaced families have been working hard to restart their lives. Due to their apathetic attitude, the authorities have further compounded their miseries as promise of providing adequate compensation was yet not fulfilled.

After sinking of a portion of the Batote-Kishtwar national highway on February 6, geological experts and engineers of the General Reserve Engineering Force (GREF) had warned against repairing the sunken stretch. To connect Doda and Kishtwar districts with rest of the country, the authorities had decided to construct alternative 5 km road from Assar to Trungal via Ugana-Chamkala.

Amidst hostile weather and extreme cold, 12 families residing in that belt evicted from the native place after a notice was served to them to vacate their homes within 24 hours to construct the alternative route.

Shan, a homeless farmer, rued: “While acquiring our land and homes, revenue officers had promised to settle our cases within a week’s time but nothing has been done so far after passing of more than 50 days.”

Two days ago, these displaced families joined by a large number of locals held symbolic protest to express their anger against delay tactics being adopted by the authorities to release compensation. “It was just a symbolic protest, we will stop movement of traffic if our demands were not fulfilled”, warned Mohammad Ashraf, another displaced person.

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Nazool land occupants seek amendment to Roshni Act
Tribune News Service

Jammu, March 15
Forum of Occupants of Nazool Land (FONL) has appreciated Finance Minister Abdul Rahim Rather’s statement on occupancy of the state land vis-ŕ-vis the ownership rights.

In a meeting held here yesterday, FONL chairman Inderjeet Khajuria said the J&K State Land (vesting of the ownership rights to occupants) Act, popularly known as the Roshni Act, envisage that all occupants of the government lands, up to 1989, be conferred property rights in lieu of rates fixed by the committee under DC.

Conceived by the NC government during its rule before 2002, under the Roshni Act revenue collected from such lands had to be utilised in power generation.

He said a major revenue had to be collected from the agricultural land under occupation of farmers in the rural areas, which the previous PDP-Cong coalition government given away almost free of any charge after amending the Act.

And on the contrary, the government wanted to collect the entire targeted revenue from a small number of occupants of lands in urban areas, which have been duly under regular lease deed and where the occupants have been putting up from the past over six decades, he said.

Such occupants in the urban areas have already paid premium fixed at the time of lease deed and were also paying rentals on the same, he added.

The FONL has demanded that since the present government is convinced that there are anomalies in the Amended Act, the same should be further amended to make it rational legislation.

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J&K Bank widens ambit of sops for exporters

Srinagar, March 15
Extending the ambit of its relief and rehabilitation package to exporters of the state, Jammu and Kashmir Bank has decided to provide interest relief to local ones in the wake of meltdown in the global markets.

The bank will provide an additional interest rate concession up to 100 basis points across the board to the export advances granted by the bank, bank chairman Haseeb A Drabu said at workshop here.

The workshop for exporters from the valley was organised by the bank in collaboration with the Export Credit Guarantee Corporation of India (ECGCI), a Government of India undertaking which provides insurance against various kinds of commercial and political risks to exporters.

Drabu said awareness about ECGCI service was generally low among exporters in the valley because the ECGCI did not have any office in the state.

Exporters from the state were presently devoid of this facility as the ECGCI did not have any office in Jammu and Kashmir.

In this backdrop Drabu took the initiative of inviting top officials of the ECGCI to the valley to create awareness among the exporter community about their products.

The ECGCI has been already requested to open its full-fledged branch in Srinagar. While the ECGCI is considering the request, J&K Bank, in the meantime, has decided to act as a corporate agent for the agency and an agreement in this regard is likely to be signed soon.

The bank proposes to take the initiative forward through its branch network to the doorstep of exporters here.

Drabu also asked the ECGCI to customise its products to suite local requirements.

Further clarifying the issues raised by exporters ECGCI officials said they ascertained the genuineness of the claim and would not be guided merely by objections raised by the buyer. — PTI

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Baglihar ‘not eligible’ for carbon credits
Tribune News Service

Jammu, March 15
The Jammu and Kashmir State Power Development Corporation (JKSPDC) today said the 450 MW Baglihar Hydro-Electric Project was not eligible for seeking carbon credits under the Kyoto Protocol signed by India as the project was started much before the Protocol came into place.

According to an official statement, the spokesman of the corporation said the question of sale of carbon credits from the Baglihar Hydro-Electric Project does not arise and no decision on price at which carbon credits could be sold has been taken, as the JKSPDC does not own any carbon credits, the spokesman said.

The spokesman was reacting to a news report that appeared in a section of media about the alleged scrapping of MoU over Baglihar carbon credit share.

The spokesman said the perceived loss to State Exchequer was misconceived, adding that the Board of JKSPDC had not referred such operational matters to the state Cabinet.

As per Kyoto Protocol on climate change, which came into effect in February 2005, there is a time period up to 2012 for seeking carbon credits.

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Three years on, school building not rebuilt
Shariq Majeed
Tribune News Service

Poonch, March 15
Three years after the building of Government Primary School, Phagwari, in the Mandi area, collapsed due to strong winds and heavy rainfall, the government is yet to repair it, forcing students to study in open. They have to wind up their studies during rainy days with no school building.

A teacher of the school told The Tribune that after the school building---comprising a hall and a store--- collapsed in 2006, the state government didn’t bother to get the building reconstructed, as the government did not provide funds for the reconstruction, He added that they had to keep the school records and other things, including furniture, in private houses.

Sarpanch of Phagwari Ghulam Muhammad said, “Even after several representations to the government on the matter, it has failed to get the building reconstructed. However, as a sign of mere tokenism the government has given a tent to the teachers to run the school, but it is not possible to run the classes in a single tent”.

A senior officer in the Education Department in Poonch said, “We don’t have funds to reconstruct the school building. As soon as we get funds we will reconstruct it. He added that to mitigate the sufferings of the students, the department has given a tent to the school.

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NC blames Mufti for erosion of special status
Ehsan Fazili
Tribune News Service

Srinagar, March 15
The ruling NC has blamed opposition PDP patron Mufti Mohammad Sayeed for playing “politics on the issues like autonomy” saying the former Chief Minister was involved in “dismantling the strong edifice of special status”.

A spokesman of the NC here today pointed out that Chief Minister Omar Abdullah had warned against the weakening of Article 370, while replying to the discussions of the motion of thanks on the Governor’s Address in the state Assembly on March 2. “He underscored the significance of this Article of the Constitution in strengthening the relations between the state and the rest of the country”, the spokesman stated. Omar has said Article 370 is a bridge between the state and the Centre and any attempt to weaken it would have bearing on the ties.

The NC has already passed a resolution in the state Assembly for restoration of the autonomy to the state, the spokesman added. He asked Mufti to surrender his slogan of self-rule which had been devised “to cause division of masses in the state”, the NC spokesman said.

He held that Mufti, during his three-year rule had weakened the special status of the state by bringing changes in the Property Act and State Subject Rules.

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Lashkar help held with hawala money

Jammu, March 15
A financial coordinator of the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) was arrested and Rs 50,000 in hawala money seized from his possession in Rajouri district, police sources said here.

“Based on specific information about the movement of LeT aide Nazir Ahmed of Bathoi, Mahore tehsil, Reasi district, a team of SOG conducted a raid and arrested him from Pangai village in Thannamandi area of Rajouri district yesterday night,” Dy. SP, operation, Rajouri, Farooq Qaiser said.

He said Rs 50,000 was seized from his possession, which he collected from Thannamandi area and had to deliver it to Lashkar militants in Reasi district. Nazir was involved in transferring hawala money between LeT militants operating in Reasi and Rajouri districts.

Nazir said the money was supposed to be handed over to two militants - Abu Noman and Abdul Rehman. — ANI

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23 injured in accident
Tribune News Service

Udhampur, March 15
At least 23 passengers were injured when a vehicle rolled into a deep gorge near Mahore in Reasi district. Five injured have been shifted to a Reasi hospital with others undergoing treatment at Mahore.

According to reports, the driver lost control of the vehicle carrying members of a marriage party while negotiating a curve near Jam Salan on the Reasi-Mahore road. The vehicle skidded off the road and rolled into the gorge. Before the police reached the spot, local people started rescue operations.

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Army contains forest fire
Tribune News Service

Rajouri, March 15
A few days after the fire reached near three villages--Kanga Gali, Panjni and forward Balakote-- along the LoC in this district, local sources said the Army had managed to prevent the fire from spreading to this side in the Dabbi forest area.

The sources said the Army had dug a horizontal line near the outer boundary of the fire-affected area to prevent the fire from spreading. Besides, the Army is also using water to contain the fire.

However, the sources said the district administration had failed to take measures to contain the fire as fire-prevention and emergency services personnel hadn’t visit the area.

An officer in the local administration, however, claimed that they could not do much in the area as it was in the control of the Army.

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Pak intruder shot dead
Tribune News Service

Jammu, March 15
The BSF late last night gunned down a Pakistani intruder while trying to infiltrate into India.

According to deputy commandant S. Balasubramaniam, BSF jawans deployed at the Kotkuba border outpost in RS Pura sector found a Pakistani intruder moving towards the fence. As the jawans asked him to stop, the intruder started running towards the fence, making the BSF open fire in which he was killed on the spot, approximately 500 metres inside Indian territory.

An FIR had been lodged in this connection and the body handed over to the police.

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School annual day
Tribune News Service

Jammu, March 15
Heritage School, Jammu, celebrated its annual sports day on Sunday in which Minister for Industries and commerce, labour and Rural Development S.S. Salathia was the chief guest.

The programme commenced with the unfurling of the school flag by the chief guest, followed by the welcome speech by the Principal and the reading out of academic report.

A colourful cultural programme was followed by exclusive sports events involving tiny tots. Prizes were given to students for excelling in the academic and co-curricular activities.

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Sadhavi Ritambhra for universal civil code

Rehari, March 15
Sadhavi Ritambhra, firebrand leader, who came to attend the congregation of religious Hindu leaders at Rehari in Jammu, urged people to vote for those candidates who can protect the Indian culture and sovereignty. “The voters must judge the candidates on the basis of their credentials to guard Indian culture and sovereignty, especially, when the country is facing security threats from outside the country.” She termed the delay of the Central government to hang terrorist Afzal Guru as ‘national betrayal’.

Sadhavi also reiterated her demands for universal civil code, ban on cow-slaughter, completion of the Ram temple in Ayodhya and national heritage status for cow, Ganges and Ram Setu. — TNS

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Programme for entrepreneurship

Srinagar March 15
The Jammu and Kashmir Entrepreneurship Development Institute, under the Prime Minister’s Employment Generation Programme, started a two-week programme in Pulwama on Saturday.

The programme aimed at generating employment through setting up ventures, projects and micro-enterprises to bring together widely dispersed traditional artisans, rural and urban unemployed youth. In charge, Academics, JKEDI Khursheed-ul-Islam asked participants to draw maximum benefits from the scheme launched by the government for fostering entrepreneurship. — TNS

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One held on murder charge
Tribune News Service

Srinagar March 15
The police has solved within 12 hours the murder case of class IV student whose body was found from a jungle in Pahalgam (Anantnag).

Farooq Ahmmad Khatana of Mavoora, Pahalgam, was arrested on a charge of killing his stepbrother, Javed Ahmmad Khatana, a class IV student.

According to the police, Farooq Ahmmad Khatana had killed his younger brother for property since he (Farooq ) had sold his share of land, with the rest belonging to the deceased.

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2 houses, 2 shops gutted

Udhampur, March 15
Two houses and two shops were gutted in devastating fires that broke out in Kishtwar and Udhampur districts late on Saturday night.

Reports said two houses and a cattleshed were destroyed in a fire at Malar village of Chatroo tehsil in Kishtwar. Some cattle also perished in the fire.

In another fire incident, two shops were completely gutted when an LPG cylinder exploded in the Himbra-Mansar area, 15 km from Udhampur. — TNS

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