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THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE
TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
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J A M M U   &   K A S H M I R

Staff Shortage
Enraged residents lock schools 

Udhampur, November 30
For the past three days enraged residents locked two schools at Charti and Gaddian in this district due to shortage of teaching staff. Local MLA Balwant Singh Mankotia today visited the villages and assured residents that he would take up this matter with the authorities concerned.

Rain brings relief, 2 Haj flights take off
Srinagar, November 30
After a prolonged dry spell, the state today witnessed rainfall in lower areas and snowfall in upper reaches, bringing much relief to the people.

Set up reconciliation panel: Omar
Srinagar, November 30
A galaxy of politicians and academicians from India, Pakistan, the USA and the UK participated in a two-day Kashmir peace conference organised by Kashmir Centre, London, that concluded in the British capital yesterday. Those attending the conference from Jammu and Kashmir included National Conference president Omar Abdullah and Hurriyat Conference chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq.


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Schools being vacated: CRPF
Srinagar, November 30
Describing the situation in the state as improved comparatively, director-general of the CRPF S.I.S. Ahmad said here today that the process of vacating schools and hospitals in the valley was going on.

 


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Staff Shortage
Enraged residents lock schools 
Tribune News Service

Udhampur, November 30
For the past three days enraged residents locked two schools at Charti and Gaddian in this district due to shortage of teaching staff. Local MLA Balwant Singh Mankotia today visited the villages and assured residents that he would take up this matter with the authorities concerned.

Although the residents asserted to intensify their stir against callous attitude of the education department and gave an ultimatum to the authorities, they assured the MLA that they would not lock the schools in the future. They warned that they would not hesitate to take extreme steps if adequate staff was not deputed at Government High School, Charti, and Government Middle School, Gaddian.

Itís all due to the shortage of staff that most of these schools registered zero per cent results in board examinations. Surprisingly, at high school, Pekhlai, which caters need of more than 25 villages, has been functioning headless since long.

Meanwhile, the MLA inaugurated the building of the primary school at Kulal. For the past three years the school was function in the open. 

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Rain brings relief, 2 Haj flights take off
Tribune News Service

Srinagar, November 30
After a prolonged dry spell, the state today witnessed rainfall in lower areas and snowfall in upper reaches, bringing much relief to the people.

Meanwhile, the state government has approached the defence ministry to provide Air Force services to airlift the stranded Haj pilgrims in Srinagar whose flights could not be operated during the past three days due to poor visibility at the airport.

Due to improvement in the visibility at the Srinagar airport after the rain, two scheduled Haj flights carrying 431 pilgrims and two domestic flights operated today.

It was after a couple of months that the valley witnessed rainfall in the afternoon, bringing down the day temperature. There were also reports of snowfall at Gulmarg, Pahalgam and Sonmarg and other areas.

Several vehicles carrying tourists to Gulmarg stayed back due to slippery conditions on the 11-km sloppy road to Tangmarg. It was snowing slightly in the Sonmarg area, 100 km from here, where the Zojila Pass has already been closed to traffic for the six months of winter.

JAMMU: Chief Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad on Friday talked to Defence Minister A.K. Antony on the telephone and requested him to press into service Air Force aircraft to airlift the pilgrims.

Azad said the defence minister assured him that he would do whatever possible to tide over the situation.

Due to poor visibility at the Srinagar airport no flight has taken off from there for the past six days.

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Set up reconciliation panel: Omar
Tribune News Service

Srinagar, November 30
A galaxy of politicians and academicians from India, Pakistan, the USA and the UK participated in a two-day Kashmir peace conference organised by Kashmir Centre, London, that concluded in the British capital yesterday. Those attending the conference from Jammu and Kashmir included National Conference president Omar Abdullah and Hurriyat Conference chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq.

The conference was held amid demonstrations by a number of Kashmiris residing in the UK against the participation of Abdullah. The protesters said they had been wrongly informed about the invitation extended to all other separatist leaders, including Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Shabir Ahmad Shah and Mohammad Yasin Malik.

Addressing the conference, Abdullah demanded the setting up of a truth and reconciliation commission, headed by someone who is neither an Indian nor Pakistani, to resolve the Kashmir issue. He said the commission should be mandated to look into the problems on both sides of the LoC. Such a commission could lay the roadmap for the way forward to resolve the Kashmir issue, a party spokesman here said. Under the present circumstances, the unilateral demilitarisation was not possible, which could only take place when India, Pakistan and China declare the erstwhile entire Jammu and Kashmir as military-free zone. The resolution through right to self-determination or plebiscite was not feasible and UN resolutions had lost relevance after five decades of the issue.

Abdullah said impediments in the resolution of the Kashmir issue lie in the political turmoil within Pakistan and lack of consensus in the Indian political spectrum on the Indo-US nuclear pact. These two issues, he said, have engaged Indian and Pakistan establishment to a larger extent thereby retarding the progress of dialogue between the two nations on the Kashmir issue. He said the second major impediment was the violence in Jammu and Kashmir, whether perpetuated by the gun of the security forces or by the militants.

Others attending the conference included Hurriyat leader Nayeem Ahmad Khan, PoK Prime Minister Sardar Attique Khan, former Pakistan information minister Mushahid Hussain Syed and Ghulam Nabi Fai of the Kashmir American Council. 

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Schools being vacated: CRPF
Tribune News Service

Srinagar, November 30
Describing the situation in the state as improved comparatively, director-general of the CRPF S.I.S. Ahmad said here today that the process of vacating schools and hospitals in the valley was going on.

Talking to mediapersons here today, he said nearly 80 school and hospital buildings had been vacated by its troops during the past one month. The process was going on and other buildings would be vacated depending upon the availability of alternate arrangement provide by the government. The priority was to vacate school buildings, he said.

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