|Tuesday, April 4, 2000,
killing: BJP walks out
hurt as mob clashes with cops in Srinagar
Maulvis killing: BJP
JAMMU, April 3 The BJP members today staged a walkout in protest against kidnapping and killing of its Rajouri district Vice-President Maulvi Ahmed Din by the militants.
As question hour ended the six BJP members, including Mr Shiv Charan Gupta, were on their feet shouting and demanding a probe into the killing of the BJP Vice-President. Today said the state government had taken no step to trace out the BJP leader after he was kidnapped from his house four days ago. The protesting members alleged that one woman police official had assisted the militants in kidnapping the Maulvi.
As the government made no statement the BJP members staged a walkout despite assurance from the Speaker that the Chief Minister would make a statement later on.
The Chief Minister, Dr Farooq Abdullah, condemned the killing of the Maulvi.
He said that Pak agencies were bent upon carrying out selective killings. He urged political leaders and others to remain vigilant to foil the Pak gameplan.
Dr Abdullah said that the State needed more forces and he requested the BJP members to use their influence with the Union Government so that additional companies of para-military forces were sent to the State. He feared that the militants were planning to kick up bigger violence in the State.
The Chief Minister said in reply to a question that the state government was planning to appoint Lok Pal so that non-government employees too could be covered under the prevention of corruption act. He said that since the National Conference assumed power three years ago the vigilance organisation had apprehended 1670 officials in 631 cases. Of 531 cases, prosecution had been granted in 96 cases and 403 officials had been challaned. Investigations in 338 cases were yet to be finalised.
Dr Abdullah said that the delay in prosecution was the result of court injunctions brought by affected parties. He did not agree with some members suggestion that the CBI be asked to investigate into cases pertaining to corrupt practices. He said our agencies did much better investigation work than the CBI.
The government informed the House that 3,016 militants had surrendered so far. In reply to a question tabled by Mr Saifullah (NO) the Chief Minister said that 915 surrendered militants had been appointed as special police officers,812 had been recruited in the CRPF and 276 in the BSF. Some surrendered militants had been given route permits for plying vehicles.
The allotment of nazool and evacuee property to influential people generated heat in the House. The Revenue Minister, Mr Abdul Qayoom, found it tough to reply to a volley of supplementaries from Opposition members the ruling National Conference.
At one stage Mr Qayoom had a dig at former minister of state for revenue, Mr Safder Ali Beg. Mr Beg wanted to know what norms the government had adopted for giving nazool and other evacuee land on lease. Mr Qayoom posed a counter question what norms did you adopt when you were a minister in charge of revenue? This silenced Mr Beg.
Mr Qayoom assured the House that he would examine all the lease deeds and wherever norms had been violated those deeds would be cancelled.
The Minister of State for Home, Mr Mushtaq Ahmed Lone, made a statement on the floor of the House regarding reports on five youths missing in Anantnag district. Some members had repeatedly raised the issue during the last several days and it was feared that the five militants killed in Pathribal might have been those youths.
Mr Lone said that those
killed Pathribal were militants involved in the Chatti
Singhpora carnage. He said the government had instituted
an inquiry and the report would be placed on the table of
the House shortly.
Price rise issue
SRINAGAR, April 3 (UNI) At least 20 persons were injured when police opened fire, burst teargas shells and resorted to lathicharge to disperse stone pelting mob in different city areas who was protesting against the recent increase in the prices of government controlled rice, atta, kerosene and sugar.
This is the first demonstration in 10-year-long militancy in the valley on an issue not related to militancy or human rights violations.
Official sources told UNI that at least two persons were injured when police opened fire at Kadi-Kadal in the downtown area to disperse a stone-pelting mob today.
The demonstrators were protesting against the increase in the price of rice, sugar, atta, and kerosene under the public distribution system.
At least 18 persons were injured in a pitched battle between demonstrators and the riot police at Maisuma, Dal Gate, Nowpora, Batmaloo, Bemina, Khanyar and some uptown areas.
More than 24 vehicles were also damaged due to stone-pelting by the demonstrators on various routes. Later all vehicles went off the roads.
Shops and business establishments in all major business centres remained closed though there was no formal call for strike in protest against price rise.
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