|Saturday, October 28, 2000,
Strike hits life in J&K,
Shabir Shah held
100 officers seek PM’s
Migrant teachers flay govt
Police firing: panel
All set for LAHDC
New forest policy in
|8-yr jail for
JAMMU, Oct 27 —Three heavily-armed infiltrators from Pakistan-occupied Kashmir arrested by the Indian Army in Rajouri sector have been sentenced to eight years' imprisonment under the Terrorist and Disruptive Activities (prevention) Act (TADA).
42 lakh visit Vaishno Devi
SRINAGAR, Oct 27 (PTI) — Shops and business establishments remained closed and normal life was disrupted in Srinagar and other major towns of Kashmir valley today following a general strike called by the Hurriyat Conference to seek resolution of the “Kashmir dispute” through a trilateral dialogue.
“The strike is to protest the Indian occupation as on this day 53 years ago Indian troops landed in the valley,” a spokesman for the Hurriyat Conference said and described October 27 as the “blackest day” in the history of Kashmir.
In view of the strike call, main commercial areas of Srinagar and other parts of Kashmir valley wore a deserted look, while in other parts the shops remained partially closed.
The shopkeepers who had opened their shops had also kept their shutters half closed, official sources said, adding that skeleton transport was plying.
Work in government and semi-government offices were badly affected throughout the valley in view of the strike, while banks, courts, educational institutions, government-run ration depots, petrol stations and other establishments remained closed.
The police and paramilitary forces, deployed in sensitive areas of Srinagar, were seen patrolling the streets.
Democratic Freedom Party president Shabir Ahmad Shah, with 30 supporters, was taken into preventive custody when he tried to lead a protest demonstration here today, official sources said.
The police action followed immediately after Shah made a dramatic presence at Maulana Azad Road and staged a demonstration near Women’s College in the heart of the city to protest the “entry of Indian troops in Kashmir valley” on this day 53 years ago.
Shah and his supporters were taken into preventive custody as they violated prohibitory orders enforced in the city and tried to block the main road.
SRINAGAR, Oct 27 (PTI) — At least 100 officers of the Jammu and Kashmir Government, presently posted in Srinagar, have sought the Prime Minister’s intervention against the state government’s directive asking them to vacate the “secured accommodation”, saying “The hasty and arbitrary action” has put their lives in great danger and exposed them to militants.
“The hasty and arbitrary action of the state government has put the lives of 100 officers from the Jammu region presently posted here in great danger, and exposed us to the threat of the militants”, the officers said in a signed communication faked to the Prime Minister, yesterday.
“The state government has given us a very short notice of four days and simultaneously directed the officials of the Security Wing and the State Road Transport Corporation to withdraw the security cover and facilities with immediate effect”, they said.
“It will be difficult for us to stay in rented accommodation in the militancy-infested town”, they said adding that no landlord was willing to rent out accommodation to them and such circumstances would compel them to migrate.
Terming the governments action as “arbitrary”, as it had extended this facility to over 5,000 employees who move to Srinagar in summer and Jammu in winter, the officers have sought the Prime Minister’s intervention and a direction to the J&K Estates Department to facilitate their stay in the secured accommodation.
Migrant teachers flay govt
JAMMU, Oct 27 — The state government has been blamed for adopting double standards as far as the adjustment of migrant employees and career of students belonging to the displaced community from Kashmir are concerned. According to senior leaders of the Panun Kashmir, the All-Kashmiri Pandit Solidarity Conference (AKPSC) and the All-State Kashmiri Pandit Conference (ASKPC), the state government, on the one hand, merged the camp college meant for migrant students with the main college to get it affiliated with Jammu University.
On the other hand, it refused to adjust scientists and other employees belonging to the Sheri Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology (SKUAST) in the one at Jammu.The students belonging to the camp college have been on a chain fast for the past 13 days in protest against the government decision to delink the college from Kashmir University and affiliate it with Jammu University.
They have been arguing that even after having been affiliated with Jammu University there was no guarantee that they will not be treated as migrants.They said with a status of migrants they would neither be able to get admission to postgraduate courses in Jammu University nor get jobs in government departments in the Jammu region. It will also seal any chance for them to return to the valley for higher education and to seek government jobs.
The government, however, says the decision had been taken to allow migrant students to complete their degree courses on time as the examination schedule usually got disrupted in Kashmir due to militancy. According to the Education Department authorities, the migrants had been demanding affiliation with Jammu University since 1991. They said in addition to this, the state had no resources to run separate colleges for the local students and for the migrants.
But the situation in the case of migrant employees in SKUAST is quite different. Before the birth of the SKUAST (Jammu), these employees, especially scientists, had been allowed to work in the SKUAST wing in Jammu. When the SKUAST was bifurcated to allow Jammu to have a university of agriculture, a high-level meeting was held under the chairmanship of the Principal Secretary Planning. The Vice-Chancellor of the SKUAST (K) and the SKUAST (J) were also present. It was decided that the funds required for the payment of salaries to the migrants shall be “projected in the budget of the SKUAST (K). However, the Agriculture Department shall transfer the same to the SKUAST (J) for disbursement to the migrant teachers. The Vice-Chancellor, SKUAST (J), shall try to utilise the services of the migrant staff and in case of creation of posts in future, adjustment of available and qualified migrant staff should be considered for adjustment against such posts.”As per this decision, the migrant employees received their salaries for March, April and May, 2000 from the Vice-Chancellor of the SKUAST (J).
From June, the old system of receving monthly salaries through the SKUAST (K) was reintroduced. The migrant teachers were informed by the government that the decision taken in February regarding the gradual adjustment of migrant employees had been reversed.The employees sent repeated communications to the Chancellor, Mr G.C. Saxena, who is also the Governor of the state, to the Chief Minister and others, suggesting to them that the gradual adjustment of the migrant staff in the SKUAST (J) or permission to the scientists to carry on their teaching and research work in the SKUAST (J) could save over Rs 2.5 crore annually.
There was, however, no response from the government.As a result, senior scientists continue to be without any work and the students are suffering. Bifurcation of the university had opened new opportunities for the SKUAST (J) to grow from a small campus to a major university. But this opportunity seems to have been wasted as for the past eight months there has been no considerable improvement in any faculty in the university because of a resource crunch.What has shocked the scientists is the decision of the Vice-Chancellor SKUAST (J) to advertise vacant posts for which the teachers belongintg to the displaced community could also apply. He has not mentioned anything whether the seniority or the service tunure of those who were selected, would be maintained.All-Kashmiri State Pandit Conference leaders have urged the state government not to create a wedge between the migrants and the people of Jammu by adopting “double standards” while dealing with the problems of the displaced community.
SRINAGAR, Oct 27 (UNI) — Justice S.R. Pandian, probing the Barakpora police firing, submitted his report to Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah today.
The one man commission was appointed by the state government to probe into the police firing on a procession that left eight persons dead and scores injured in April.
The processionists were demanding that bodies of five persons allegedly killed by soldiers in a fake encounter, be exhumed for identification.
The villagers alleged that the soldiers arrested and burnt to death five villagers on March 25 and later labelled them as foreign militants responsible for the massacre of 35 Sikhs at Chatisinghpora on March 20.
The bodies were later exhumed and handed over to their relatives. The authorities suspended the SSP and shifted the DIG and the Deputy Commissioner of Anantnag after the firing.
All set for LAHDC
general elections SRINAGAR, Oct 27 (PTI) — All preparations have been made for the October 28 general elections to the 26-member Ladakh Autonomous, Hill Development Council
(LAHDC), Deputy Commissioner, Leh, Dheeraj Gupta said here yesterday. As many as 74 candidates are in the fray for the second general elections to the LAHDC, including 26 of J and K National Conference, 25 of the Indian National Congress, 15 of the Bharatiya Janta Party and eight independents, Mr Gupta said. More than 68,000 voters, including 33,000 women, would be exercising their franchise at 205 polling stations in the district, he said. The counting of votes would be held for all constituencies in Leh on November 3 while the results were expected to be available by the same evening, he said adding that the new council would be formed on November 4.
SRINAGAR, Oct 27 (PTI) — All preparations have been made for the October 28 general elections to the 26-member Ladakh Autonomous, Hill Development Council (LAHDC), Deputy Commissioner, Leh, Dheeraj Gupta said here yesterday.
As many as 74 candidates are in the fray for the second general elections to the LAHDC, including 26 of J and K National Conference, 25 of the Indian National Congress, 15 of the Bharatiya Janta Party and eight independents, Mr Gupta said.
More than 68,000 voters, including 33,000 women, would be exercising their franchise at 205 polling stations in the district, he said.
The counting of votes would be held for all constituencies in Leh on November 3 while the results were expected to be available by the same evening, he said adding that the new council would be formed on November 4.
SRINAGAR, Oct 27 (UNI) — A forest policy is in the offing in Jammu and Kashmir to offset damages caused to the green wealth during the past 10 years of turmoil.
An official spokesman said that the government had accorded top priority to afforestation in the state as a large portion of the forests had been denuded over the past few years.
He said a full-fledged forest protection group was set up to safeguard forests from the onslaught of smuggling.
He said about 750 saw mills operating near forest areas in the state were closed down and 21 smugglers had been booked under the Public Safety Act while cases against 148 smugglers were being in processed.
He said the government had laid great thrust on protection, conservation and development of forests and accordingly allocation was increased from 2 per cent to about 5 per cent of the total state’s plan outlay.
He said it had been decided that forest guards would be given modern communication system and weaponry to enable them to safeguard the green wealth of the state. Training would be a continuous process for them.
For meeting the social obligation the government had supplied 20.58 cft tiber on concessional rates to the people for construction purposes. Besides, 2.41 lakh quintals of firewood were given to mosques and cremation agencies in the state, he said and added that as many as 15125 quintals of firewood was despatched to Kargil and 6000 quintals of firewood to Leh district this year to meet the winter requirements.
JAMMU, Oct 27 (UNI) —Three heavily-armed infiltrators from Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) arrested by the Indian Army in Rajouri sector have been sentenced to eight years' imprisonment under the Terrorist and Disruptive Activities (prevention) Act (TADA).
The police said Wednesday’s judgement was the fourth conviction under the Act in Jammu and Kashmir.
Salah-ud-Din, Mohammad Umar and Mohammad Shah were also sentenced by the tada court at Jammu to a three-year jail term under the Indian Arms Act and two years' in prison under egressive and in-Egressive Movement Control Ordinance across one country to another country without passport (E. imco).
42 lakh visit
Vaishno Devi KATRA (J&K), Oct 27 (PTI) — Over 42.84 lakh pilgrims from various parts of the country have so far visited the shrine of Mata Vaishno Devi during this year. This is about 4.80 lakh more than the number of pilgrims that visited the shrine during the corresponding period last year, an official spokesman said here yesterday.
KATRA (J&K), Oct 27 (PTI) — Over 42.84 lakh pilgrims from various parts of the country have so far visited the shrine of Mata Vaishno Devi during this year.
This is about 4.80 lakh more than the number of pilgrims that visited the shrine during the corresponding period last year, an official spokesman said here yesterday.
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