Protests, clashes in Hawal, Awantipora, Sopore, Pampore observes shutdown

SRINAGAR, OCT 16 : With no stop in braid chopping incidents, protests and clashes were witnessed in many areas of the Kashmir valley
In Hawal area of Srinagar clashes erupted after the students of Islamia College staged a protest against braid-chopping incidents. Reports said that the students of the college staged massive protests against the “failure” of the government to prevent braid-cutting incidents.
Police lobbed teargas shells to disperse the protesting students who were pelting stones on them. The traffic movement on the road was disrupted due to the clashes.
Meanwhile, protests were also held on Srinagar-Jammu highway in Awantipora area of Pulwama district. The protesters blocked the traffic movement on the highway to register protest against braid-chopping incidents. Later, police reached at the spot and burst tear gas shells to disperse the protesters. The traffic was resumed on the highway after the police action.
Protests also erupted in Sopore town of Baramulla district after a woman said her braid was chopped off by unknown persons. A woman of Ningli area of Sopore, in her fifties, said that unknown persons chopped off her braid.
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.
Pertinently this is the third such incident in the area in less than twenty-four hours. Yesterday, two women said their braids were chopped off by unknown persons.
Meanwhile, shutdown was observed in Pampore town of Pulwama district against the increasing braid-chopping incidents. Reports said that shops and other business establishments are closed in the town.
Kashmir police chief Muneer Ahmad Khan today said scientific examination of the braid-cutting victims would be conducted. “We will collect samples to know what type of sprays have been used on the victims,” Khan said during a press conference in Srinagar.

Arrested two militants, OGW; says police; reiterates surrender call for local militants

SRINAGAR, OCT 16 : Police claimed to have arrested two militants and an alleged Over Ground Worker (OGW) from south Kashmir in last few days.
Addressing a presser at PCR Srinagar, Kashmir police chief, Munir Ahmad Khan, said that the trio were arrested from Kund in Qazigund area and Kulgam district.
He said that police recovered arms and ammunition from their possession. One of them three arrested persons, Khan said, helped militants to attack police vehicle in Damhal Hanjipora in Kulgam in which one cop was killed.
The apprehended militants and the OGW were paraded before the media during the presser. “Arms and ammunition were recovered from his home. He had helped the militants in carrying out the attack on the police vehicle at Damhal HanjipuraonSaturday in which one cop lost his life,” the IGP said adding the attack was carried out by militants of Hizbul Mujahideen.
He added that Hizb ul Mujahideen militants were allegedly involved in the 2 bank robberies that took place in Bijbehara and Shopian.
However, IGP said that he was surprised as how the top militant outfit denied their involvement. “There is a clear CCTV footage which showed militants belonging to Hizb ul Mujahideen are involved,” he told the media.
The IGP, flanked by IG CRPF and commander of Indian army’s 2nd sector based in Kashmir, reiterated their call of surrender policy saying, “It was still available with the Kashmiri militants who want to get back to main stream. They are our own people,” they added.

Protest erupts after girl’s braid chopped again in Sherri Baramulla

SRINAGAR, OCT 16 : Resident of Sheeri in Baramulla on Monday held protests after a girl’s braid was cut for the second time in past three days today.
According to reports the “victim” was in the courtyard of her house when the incident took place. Her mother said that the she was also present in the courtyard when all of a sudden her daughter felt unconscious. “The braid of her daughter was chopped off.”
She was rushed to Public Health Centre Sheeri in an unconscious state. Pertinently, this was the second time that the girl’s braid was cut.
“On 14th of this month, her braid was cut by unknown persons. Today, they attacked her again,” said the girl’s mother, according to reports. As the news of the incident spread, people took to streets and staged protests.

APHC expresses concern over unabated incidents of braid chopping

SRINAGAR, OCT 16 : Expressing serious concern over the unabated incidents of braid chopping and now incidents of theft of gold jewelry and cash from the households from various parts of Kashmir by mysterious criminal elements, APHC spokesman said it is an irony that the Government and its Police has failed to nab the culprits and stop the incidents of hair cutting that have left the population especially the women folk of Kashmir in great distress and a state of fear.
The spokesman said so far people of Kashmir have only witnessed the tall claims and hollow assurances on the part of the police without any tangible progress in apprehending the elements involved in these incidents which has led many to believe that the culprits are being shielded. He said the height of the oppression is that when people try to raise their voice against such incidents, police uses force including bullets, pellets and tear gas on the peaceful protestors which is highly condemnable.
The APHC spokesman said that the use of brutal force on the peaceful protestors who protest on issues of mass concern like braid cutting speaks of the intolerance of the authorities towards public outcry and he said that it is being deliberately done to terrorize the people of Kashmir in order to pressurize them to relinquish their genuine and legitimate struggle.
The spokesman said that in the wake of rising incidents of braid cutting in Kashmir, many elderly figures, prominent citizens and social activists visited the residence of incarcerated APHC chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and shared their concern and anxiety over the frequent incidents of braid cutting and harassment of the women folk with him. The delegations apprised Mirwaiz about the level of fear created by some people who also throw stones at the roof-tops of residential houses and at their entry gates in the dead of the night resulting in the panic among residents.
The spokesman said that the struggle of Kashmiris has reached the stage where now certain opposition parties and civil society groups of India also have realised the importance of resolving the long pending issues of Kashmir and are advocating immediate resolution of the issue for durable peace in the region. He, however, said it was an irony that the present dispensation at New Delhi continues with its rigid and stubborn approach towards Kashmir and wants to follow its traditional iron fist policy and military approach rather than taking steps for resolving the issue.
Reacting to the recent assertions of India’s External Affairs Minister Smt. Sushma Swraj, the APHC spokesman said the fact remains that the bitterness between India and Pakistan has remained mainly because of the pending Kashmir dispute which has been the reason of wars and acrimony between these two neighbors. He said it is evident that unless Kashmir issue is resolved keeping in view the wishes and aspirations of the people of Kashmir the claims of peace building and stability in the region will remain elusive. He said it can be realized only either by implementing UNSC resolutions on Kashmir or through a meaningful dialogue among India, Pakistan and the people of Jammu and Kashmir.

Braid chopping: No victim to undergo lie-detector or polygraph test: IGP

‘Scientific investigation started, SHOs asked to collect samples’
Srinagar, Oct 16 (KNS): While ruing the lack of cooperation from the victims of braid chopping, the Jammu and Kashmir Police on Monday said that they will start scientific investigation to get the proper lead behind these incidents.
Police also ruled out the lie-detector or polygraph testing of the braid-chopping victims.
According to the KNS correspondent, Inspector General of Police (IGP) Kashmir Range, Munir Ahmad Khan while addressing a presser here said, “The investigation regarding the braid chopping incidents was not done in a proper manner due to the lack of cooperation from the victims or their families. We have didn’t get any evidence to investigate the matter properly.”
“Whenever Police tried to find out the facts regarding these incidents, we are being told that some unknown persons came and used chemicals and later chopped off the hair, which seems far from the truth. Now, to overcome these things, we have started a scientific investigation which would give us a proper lead reading the incidents,” he said.
He said that there were reports that the victims would go through the lie-detector of polygraph tests but there are no facts in the report. No victim will go through any test,” he informed.
The IGP Kashmir further added that the through the scientific investigation, department would see the chemicals that as per the public are being used to victims. “We will collect the evidences and blood sample also to investigate the matter thoroughly, which would give us a proper lead to crack the case,” he said.
He also said that they have to see motives behind the chopping as well as no without any motive there couldn’t be any act. “Now, hopefully with this strategy, we will be able to solve the mystery,” he said, adding that the process of collecting the scientific evidences has also been started.
Khan informed that the SHOs have been directed to collect the samples to start the investigation in a scientific manner.
Asking media to play their role in this regard, IGP said, “The anti-social elements have also jumped in the fray and they are using the situation to their advantage. There were also allegations against the security forces but we have to ignore these things and should try to find out the facts.”
“I want to convey a message to the general public that we are here to protect the common masses. We are facing more hardships as compared to common man due to such kind of incidents. We don’t want to see a common man to remain confined to the four walls of the houses as it creates fear psychosis,” he said.
He also said that whenever they will get the proper evidences, they will start investigation in this regard.

Two militants, OGW arrested in swift operation: IGP

Says militants who surrender will be welcomed in mainstream
Srinagar, Oct 16 : Inspector General of Police (Kashmir zone) Muneer Ahmad Khan Monday asked the local militants to surrender and assured their complete rehabilitation.
Addressing a presser here, the IGP said two local militants and an OGW Rameez Yatoo were apprehended by the police in a swift operation.
He said one of the militant was involved in a recent bank robbery in south Kashmir. “We have identified the militant from the CCTV footage. The other militant was involved in lobbing a grenade last month on the PWD minister Naeem Akhtar’s cavalcade,” he said.
“All these militants have been arrested during live action in south Kashmir,” he said.
He said that OGW Rameez Yatoo helped in the attack on a police vehicle in Damhal-Hanjipora area of Kulgam last week.
A policeman was killed and two other injured in the attack.
“The local militants are our own people. We want them to get back to main stream, they are our own people,” Khan said.
At the occasion the apprehended militants were also shown to the media, where the IGP said that these militants were apprehended from Kund Qazigund.
He said the two bank robberies that took place recently were done by Hizbul Mujahideen militants. “They have been identified in the CCTV footage

Kamran Yousuf was arrested by Police not NIA: IGP

Says two cases stands registered against him
Srinagar, Oct 16 (KNS): Inspector General of Police (IGP) Kashmir Range, Muneer Ahmad Khan Monday said the photojournalist Kamran Yousuf was arrested by Police over his involvement in the stone pelting incidents.
Khan told reporters during a presser that two cases stands registered against Yousuf over his involvement in the stone pelting.
“Yousuf wasn’t arrested by National Investigation Agency (NIA) but he was arrested by the Police over his involvement in stone pelting especially in the year 2016,” he said, adding that later the Police handed over him to NIA when they were investigating the terror funding case.
The IGP further refused to talk over the issue, saying that “I am no any NIA officer to talk over the issue

Kashmir’s literati pledges to work for protection of Kashmiri language and culture

AMK’s two-day conference turns out to be a grand Lit Fest
Srinagar, Oct 16: Literati from across the Jammu and Kashmir state Sunday pledges to redouble its efforts for preserving and promoting the Kashmiri language and literature keeping in view the cultural onslaught it was facing from different directions.
The resolve to work towards reintegrating the language into the day to day life was made by over 350 delegates from Kashmir valley, Pir Panchal, Chenab valley and Jammu at Bandipore. They had converged at Adbee Markaz Kamraz’s 38th annual two-day conference that saw intense discussions on various aspects of language and literature. While thanking the government for introducing Kashmiri languages in 9th and 10 classes they appealed authorities to remove bottlenecks and make language teaching student friendly. “Kashmir and state in general was facing a critical time as an attempt was being made change its cultural foundation through different machinations” the participants felt.
While the inaugural session was presided over by noted writer and broadcaster Farooq Nazki, former IAS officer Mohammad Shafi Pandit presided over with Secretary J & K Academy of Art, Culture and Languages also in the presidium. AMK president Shujaat Bukhari outlined the future goals of organization saying, “this was just not an organization but it represented the concept of Kashmiri identity”. “Our headquarter in Kanispora Baramulla which is being completed soon will not be just an office but the epicenter of the cultural renaissance” he said. In his annual report AMK general secretary Mohammad Amin Bhat highlighted the enormous work the organization has done. “We are sanguine that the Kashmiri language is now back in 9th and 10th class and our efforts bore fruit” he said. “AMK has evolved as an institution and the way it is encouraging young writers is something we should be proud of” said Mohammad Shafi Pandit. Nazki too hailed the organization for its tireless effort to bring Kashmiri language back in the school curriculum.
In his key note address on “Prof Mohiuddin Hajini and Kashmiri identity” Justice (retd) Bashir Ahmed Kirmani said that Hajini was just a Kashmiri. “His life can be divided into four spheres. His person, he as a translator, as a researcher and as a writer and language activist. But the under current was that he was a real Kashmiri. If you remove that then only a skeleton remains” he said adding that Hajini’s sense of belonging to his motherland was exemplary. “He strived for exemplifying Kashmir and was proud of his heritage that is why he dedicated his life to Kashmir and Kashmir”. But, Kirmani said some more work needs to be done to explore Hajini. “Prof Hajini was an epitome of simplicity but at the same time he was a hard task master who ploughed through his ideas and thoughts and made people to follow him” said Prof Zaman Azurdah. Prof Shad Ramzan, Saleem Beg, G R Sufi, Prof Altaf Pandit, Syed Shakeel Qalandar, Piyarey Hatash, Abdul Ahad Hajini and many others took part in the scintillating discussion that followed in open house debate.
The session “Protest in Kashmiri poetry” drew lot of fireworks after a young scholar Dr Nissar un Nabi read a paper on the subject. Moderated by Showkat Sufi the discussion led to heated arguments with divergent views making it much more interesting. Nissar highlighted the protest which can be seen in Kashmiri writings. He quoted Rehman Rahi, Amin Kamil, Fayaz Tilgami, Aziz Hajini and many others. However, he was criticized for lopsided view and the discussants pointed out shortcomings in his paper. Session was presided over by Rafiq Raaz and Afaq Aziz, Zarif Ahmed Zarif, Aseer Kishtwari and Ayaz Rasool Nazki were discussants. Mushtaq Ahmed Mushtaq, Aziz Hajini, Shad Ramzan, Farooq Nazki and many others joined the discussion which many said was engrossing and productive.
Another important discussion on day two was on “Problems in teaching of Kashmiri in schools”. Director Education Dr G N Ittoo presided over the session while as Director Academics J & K Board of School Education Dr F A Peer, Prof Bashar Bashir, Prof Mohammad Rajab Sofi, AMK vice president Farooq Rafiabadi were in the presidium. “We are committed to implement the government decision of introducing Kashmiri in 9th and 10 classes in letter and spirit” said Dr Ittoo assuring full support in this regard. Dr F A Peer also assured the discrepancies in Kashmiri teaching and books would be addressed by the board. Dr Riyaz ul Hassan, Dr Nissar Nadeem and Shabir Hussain Shabir highlighted the problems in teaching of Kashmiri. An interesting debate ensued on the subject.
The valedictory session witnessed some emotional moments as AMK’s prestigious award “Sharf-e-Kamraz” was given to prominent writer Dr G M Aajir who has been one of the founders of organization. Prof Mushtaq Siddiqui vice chancellor Islamic University of Science and Technology gave away the awards. “I want to dedicate this award to four pillars of AMK—Prof Mohiuddin Hajini, Prof Rashid Nazki, Mohammad Ahsan Ahsan and Atiqa Bano who are no longer in this world” said the humble writer. Literary Forum Bandipore also got this award received by its president Mubashir Nazki. AMK also started the “Best Book Award” for writers in north Kashmir and this year’s award dedicated to Late Ali Mohammad Shahbaz was bagged by Abdul Khaliq Shams for his book “Gulshan e Anbia”. Special number AMK journal Prave, dedicated to Prof Mohiuddin Hajini was also released besides “Tawi Aend Paek” by Piyarey Hatash. “We will explore the possibility of setting up Kashmiri language department at IUST” said Prof Mushtaq Siddiqui. Principal Secretary Higher Education Asgar Samoon was also honoured at the conference for his support to Kashmiri language.

DGP rewards Rajouri police for action against drug peddlers

Srinagar, Oct 16 : Director General of Police (DGP), Dr. S.P Vaid today rewarded the team comprising 11 officials Rajouri police for their sustained pro-active drive against drugs in the district.
According to police in a statement issued to KNS, the team during their drive against the drug menace have registered 34 cases against the drug peddlers, arrested 55 persons besides effecting huge recovery of contrabands and other intoxicants.
The DGP while sanctioning the reward of Rs.45,000 and class-I commendation certificate for the anti-drug team has hoped that Rajouri police under the command of SSP Rajouri, Yougal Manhas will continue the drive with more intensity and commitment so that the menace is whipped out from the society in the district.
During the drive more than 147 kgs of bhang, 2.160 gms brown sugar, 600gms opium, 6.700 gms ganja, 3936 intoxicant capsules, 631 gms charas, 190 tablets and 82 injections have been recovered by the team. The action has far reach effect on the drug peddlers and most of the peddlers have got streamlined into the civil society.
Due to this intensified drive there was considerable increase in the registration of cases as well as persons arrested. 55 persons were arrested while 23 drug peddlers were bound down under Cr.PC. and lodged in District Jail Dhangri for a period of one month under deterrent action against drug peddlers.
Rajouri police also initiated the profiling of the drug peddlers and increased efforts were used to know deeper about the modus operandi adopted by the peddlers.


Braid Chopping disturbs socio-political scenario: Congress

‘It will have dangerous consequences’
Srinagar, Oct 16 : Describing the unabated incidents of braid chopping as shameful and highly condemnable, Congress today lashed out at both State and Central Govt for failing to contain such anti-social activities, aiming to create discord in Kashmir Valley.
Strongly condemning the braid chopping, J&K Pradesh Congress Committee (JKPCC) Secretary Irfan Naqib today urged upon the Police higher ups to take effective measures to unravel the mystery behind braid chopping, as the unabated incidents of this shameful act has disturbed the Socio Political Scenario to largest extent in the valley, besides causing great anguish among the heart and minds of the people especially women folk.
In a statement issued to KNS, he said the braid choppings have already done a great damage to peace in the valley, the ramifications of which would be more serious fraught with dangerous consequences.
“The ruling dispensation of PDP BJP should come out of the deep slumber and ensure that these shameful acts are stopped and the persons involved are punished sternly,” he said.
Adding that State Govt has miserably failed to unravel the mystery behind braid chopping, Naqib said it is a matter of serious concern that this Govt is not even able to secure the modesty of the women, which shows how non-serious this Govt about the wellbeing of the people.
He emphasized that effective measures should taken to ascertain the identity of the culprits for severe punishment, as that will only infuse sense of security among the people