Kashmiri youth thrashed, threatened in Pune

 

SRINAGAR, FEB 22 : A case of road rage quickly reached another level when local youth from Pune thrashed a Kashmiri youth after finding out that he is from Jammu and Kashmir. ‘Tuze Kashmir Bhej Denge (We will send you back to Kashmir)’, is what the local youths threatened the Kashmiri youth while beating him up in the middle of the road.

The incident took place at around 10.30 pm on Thursday night near Girija hotel on Tilak road. Jibraan Nazir Dar, the 23-year-old is a media professional and he has been living in Pune from last one and half years. Jibraan has sustained fracture on his left hand and multiple bruises on his body after he was attacked by local youths.

After the attack in Pulwama in which 40 Central Railway Police Force (CRPF) personnel lost their lives, there have been reports from some parts of the country that the Kashmiri people are being targeted by locals. Jibraan however, stated that it was not an organised attack on him and the incident initially started with road rage.

Speaking about the incident, Jibraan said, “I was riding my two-wheeler Tilak road. When I halted at the red signal near Girija hotel, a couple of men on a two-wheeler were constantly honking at me. I told them that the signal was red and I would not go ahead, dnaindia reported.”

“The rider saw my number plate which has Himachal Pradesh passing and he told me that they will send me to Himachal Pradesh if I argue with them. However, when I told them that I am not from Himachal Pradesh but from Jammu and Kashmir, they suddenly got furious and got down from their vehicle. Before I could realise what was happening, they started thrashing me,” he said.

According to Jibraan, the duo called few friends of their and they all joined them in beating him up. While they were leaving from the spot, Jibraan managed to note down the vehicle registration number of one of their vehicle and he went to the police station.

When contacted inspector Ashok Kadam, in charge of Swargate police station, he said, “We are in process of registering a complaint against the youths. We are including Indian Penal Code (IPC) section 279 (rash driving), 337 (Causing hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others) and 323 (punishment for voluntarily causing hurt) against those men.”

 

Three more Kashmiris allegedly attacked in Delhi

SRINAGAR, FEB 22 : In yet another case of targeted onslaughts against Kashmiris across the India following the attack in Pulwama, three more Kashmiris were allegedly attacked in the Delhi.

“The incident was committed by certain fringe elements in Nangloi area and the Delhi Police has lodged a First Information Report following this incident Mirror Now reported.

According to the report, the three Kashmiris were travelling from Delhi to Haryana.

“We do have minority pockets in the city and we try to maintain communal harmony in those areas. The police regularly conduct Jan Sampark meetings and religious committee meetings to maintain law and order,” Verma said.

Meanwhile, Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray’s son Aaditya Thackeray condemned the attacks where some Kashmiri students were attacked in Yavatmal district in Maharashtra.

“There was an unfortunate incident yesterday in Yavatmal, with some students of Jammu and Kashmir. The Shiv Sena had issued a press note yesterday itself which hasn’t been printed today, maybe to further sensationalise the issue or defame us, while ignoring our disciplinary action.

As of last evening, the Party has sacked those involved in the act. Jammu and Kashmir is a part of India and no Indian, or for that matter, nobody should face the brunt of anger that is towards terrorism. We understand the angst but it must be against terror, not innocent people,” he said on social media platform Twitter.

India should resolve Kashmir issue: PAK General

SRINAGAR, FEB 22 : Director General of the Pakistan Army’s media wing, Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), Major General Asif Ghafoor said India should resolve Kashmir issue.

DG ISPR said during the press conference “There are quite a few topics which I wanted to discuss for a while. However, most of my discussion will be on the situation arising after the Pulwama attack,”.

Major General Ghafoor said “On February 14, a Kashmiri youngster targeted Indian security forces. After the incident, India starting bombarding Pakistan with allegations without any thought or proof”.

He added “Pakistan took time to respond. We wanted to investigate the allegations and when we were sure footed, the prime minister of Pakistan responded.”

“Before I speak further about this issue, I want to say some things. In 1947, Pakistan obtained independence and this is something India has not been able to accept till date, he added.

In 1998, we obtained nuclear power while in 2008 we were fighting a decisive war against militants and emerging successful so India started to mobilise its troops on the border.”

“What would Pakistan benefit from Pulwama attack in light of these events? Pakistan would be at a loss,” the head of the military’s media wing stressed.

Major General Ghafoor continued, “The attack took place miles away from the Line of Control (LoC) and the explosives used were not from Pakistan. The car used was not from Pakistan either. The attack was carried out by a youngster from Kashmir who was mistreated by Indian security forces.”

“People in Indian media and social media had predicted an attack like this prior to the elections.”

Questioning whether Pakistan is in diplomatic isolation, DG ISPR said, “You have seen how the heads and delegations of foreign countries are visiting.”

“The prime minister made an offer to India which has never been made before. The premier offered to probe the India if actionable evidence is shared,” he maintained.

Refuting reports that “Pakistan is preparing for a war”, Major General Ghafoor said, “Threats and reports of a war are coming from your side. We are only using our right to self defence.”

“Pakistan’s armed forces shall never be surprised by India,” said DG ISPR.

Major General Ghafoor’s press conference comes at a time when Pakistan and neighbouring India face heightened tensions after an attack in Pulwama in Kashmir.

New Delhi has blamed Islamabad for the attack which claimed the lives of over 40 CRPF men. The Pakistani leadership has strongly denied the allegations.

Shabir Shah supports dialogue, welcomes Saudi statement on Kashmir

Srinagar, Feb 22 : Jammu Kashmir Democratic Freedom Party (JKDFP) Chairman, Shabir Shah Friday welcomed the statement of Saudi Arabia’s minister of state for foreign affairs Adel al-Jubeir about supporting the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions on Kashmir and stressing upon India to hold talks with Pakistan.
Shah, in a message from Tihar Jial, Delhi where he is undergoing detention despite his serious ailments from July 2017 after he was arrested by ED in a ‘fake, fabricated’ and an old case, said that “only democratic solution to the long pending Kashmir dispute is to implement the UNSC resolutions and both the neighbouring countries can amicably decide about it through a dialogue process.”
Shah said “only dialogue can guarantee a peaceful and stable south Asia and talks alone can end the ongoing bloodshed in the disputed region.”
He stressed upon New Delhi to shun the politics of deceit and accept the facts on ground which clearly suggest that people of Jammu Kashmir are struggling for their political rights already accepted and acknowledged by the international community.
Shah said that Kashmiri people are facing a lot in the way of their just struggle and have sacrificed their kith and kin to achieve their goal. However, it is encouraging that world leaders and countries have finally started accepting the rights of the people of Jammu Kashmir and the statement of Saudi’s Foreign minister in New Delhi is a welcome development.
Saudi Arabia’s minister of state for foreign affairs Adel al-Jubeir yesterday said in New Delhi that his country backs the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions on Kashmir and that India and Pakistan should hold talks to preserve the Kashmiri interests, the statement added.
‏Meanwhile, Shah appreciated the role of Sikh community which they played while communal elements of India were targeting Kashmiri citizens in different Indian states.
He expressed his satisfaction over the fact that finally sane voices have started supporting the oppressed Kashmiris and the Sikh community will be remembered for its recent bold stand.
Shah also praised the patience of Kashmiris who despite provocations upheld the traditions of harmony and tolerated all sorts of highhandedness with utmost bravery.

Ensure safe passage of Kashmiris back to their home land, demands Mirwaiz

Srinagar, Feb 22 : Hurriyat Conference (M) chairman, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq Friday said people of Kashmir have been watching with dismay the treatment meted out to Kashmiri students, traders, shawl sellers and businessmen in a systematic manner.
“In Jammu itself Kashmiri employees and families were targeted and dozens of vehicles torched by anti Kashmir anti Muslim fanatics,” Mirwaiz said while addressing Friday gathering.
Mirwaiz said that the anti-Kashmir hatred later spread to other states of India where Kashmiri students, were beaten harassed and in some cases rusticated from their respective colleges and Universities, while the goons targeting them were given a free hand.
Mirwaiz said that even the Governor of Mizoram called for boycotting of Kashmiri products and Kashmiris. He demanded that authorities ensure safe passage of every single Kashmiri back to their home land.
Mirwaiz reminded the people of India how Kashmiri youth first saved non-state residents including forces personnel in the deadly deluge of 2014 while in 2008 Amarnath Land agitation, not a single Yatri or non-state resident was ever attacked despite provocation.
He said that despite the fact that we are at the receiving end of repression and Kashmiri’s are killed brutally yet not even a single non-local has ever been harmed here or forced to flee. He said that it is because Kashmiri people do not believe in communal hatred or victimization and every non-local will always be as safe in Kashmir as the common Kashmiri.
Mirwaiz said when the incident happened last week at Pulwama, Kashmiri’s regretted it as we believe that every human life is precious and every human has a right to live, yet our lives and human rights are not trampled and we are killed with impunity and incarcerated under draconian PSA.
He said that “Kashmir is a political issue and time and again I have said that Kashmir has no military solution instead it needs political handling solution.”
Mirwaiz asked that didn’t Hurriyat talked to Atal Bihari Vajpayee, but the new dispensation never revisited his approach and instead resorted to use of sheer force. This force has forced our young generation towards arms.
He said people of India are being misled by a state narrative on Kashmir that obfuscates the fact of it being a dispute. “J&K is not Bihar, Himachal or any other state but an internationally accepted disputed territory divided between India and Pakistan,” he said.
He said state narrative to blame Hurriyat for all the troubles is ‘sheer propaganda’ as the fact remains that Kashmir movement is not associated to any individual or organisation but it a mass peoples’ movement for the realization of their genuine political aspirations.
Mirwaiz said that “I want to tell New Delhi should that by removing security cover, booking resistance leaders by NIA and ED, incarcerating and caging and harassing them, leadership will not change its stance as our stand is was based on principles and truth that people of Kashmir have to be given their legitimate right, the right to resolution of dispute.”
Mirwaiz said he will continue to speak the same thing and advocate the same ideology that he told to Vajpayeeji and Manmohan Singh. Mirwaiz said that he would continue to advocate the stand of his late father Shaheed-e-Milat on resolution of Kashmir either through right to self determination or through tripartite dialogue, and good will and friendship between the nuclear neighbors for the prosperity of their people.
He lauded all those who came to the aid of Kashmiri’s in this time of distress. He said the role of Sikh community in Punjab and Jammu especially Khalsa Aid that helped Kashmiri’s by offering them vehicles, and lodging them in Gurduwaras and homes is highly appreciable. He said Kashmiri people acknowledge the role played by the Sikh community.
Mirwaiz also said that the talk of strikes against Pakistan and starting a war, will only lead to destruction in entire sub-continent as both nations are nuclear powers and achieve no solution as in the past.
Kashmiris, Mirwaiz said, are against war and violence. “We are only asking for resolution of the dispute by peaceful means the most effective being dialogue. History is witness that nations even after fighting wars, have still to sit on a negotiating table to hammer out a solution,” he said.

Er Rasheed asks Army authorities to come cleane over torture on Shopian man

SRINAGAR, 22 FEB : Claiming that words about Kashmir and kashmiri’s being spoken by top Indian leadership do not match to what is happening on the ground, AIP Supremo Er Rasheed has appealed political and military leadership of India not to add salt to the injuries of Kashmiri’s.

In a statement issued today Er Rasheed said, “it looks nice when Home Minister Rajnath Singh makes a claim that Kashmir and Kashmiri’s were, are and will remain ours but on the other hand giving security forces free hand to do what they want to do with unarmed Kashmiri’s and down playing attacks and hatredness against Kashmiri’s throughout India negates Home Ministers claim.

While army is at rampage in south Kashmir, to travel on roads from Kupwara to Qazigund is becoming almost impossible as the vehicular movement is being interrupted every moment in the name of ensuring protection to army vehicles. In South Kashmir not only youth but elders including men and women are being subjected to torture and humiliation and nobody cares.

The relatives of militants are facing huge threats to their lives and despite knowing that whosoever joins militant ranks does not take any permission from the parents, atrocities on their families are at peak. Army commanders should answer that what was the fault of Ishaq Ah Lone a resident of Rawalpora Shopian who has been tortured so severely that no human hearted person can even bear to see him. His only fault is that his brother has reportedly joined militants.

The law enforcing agencies are doing nothing but are hand in glow with those who commit atrocities on unarmed civilians. When security agencies and New Delhi want kashmiri’s to condemn attacks on security forces, they need to answer that why do not authorities take notice of shameful atrocities on kashmiri’s.”

Er Rasheed while reacting to Supreme Court direction asking states to take care of kashmiri’s in their respective states, said that there is nothing worth enjoying what Supreme Court has asked for, as the law enforcing agencies in the states are being controlled by those who are directly involved in attacks against kashmiri’s.

He said, “It would have been to some extent satisfactory had Supreme Court sought action taken details and measures against the goons attacking kashmiri’s. Supreme Court should have asked details about FIR’s lodged against those who attacked kashmiri’s everywhere, deported them back and vandalized their properties.

While hundreds of kashmiri’s have been beaten to pulp, not even a single person has been arrested so far in any part of the country and what can be more unfortunate than the fact that people holding highest offices do ask Indian’s to boycott kashmiri’s and thus negate themselves Home Minister’s claim that kashmiri’s are our own people.”

Attacks on Kashmiris shameful: CPI (M)

 

Srinagar, Feb 22 : CPI (M) leaders Mohammad Yousuf Tarigami, Ghulam Nabi Malik and Om Prakash Friday termed the attacks on Kashmiris outside the Valley as shameful, saying that the direction of Supreme Court is appreciable.
“In the aftermath of February 14 Pulwama terror attack, jingoistic communal atmosphere is being created in the country, while in certain places, protests were deliberately turned against Kashmiri students, businessmen, employees and others. This tragic and horrible act of terror should not be used for narrow partisan interests and should not lead to polarize the already charged situation,” the trio said in a joint presser held at Jammu.
They said despite provocative situations in the last three decades, people of Jammu always maintained communal harmony, amity and brotherhood. “Today also the role of majority of people of Jammu and civil society is appreciable. However, some fringe communal elements want to incite violence for petty political gains. They want to use this anger for their nefarious designs,” they said.
They said authorities should have deployed security forces in sensitive areas of Jammu on the first day as there were apprehensions about a flare-up after the Pulwama attack.
“Jammu and Kashmir are inter-dependent on each other and any divide is not in the interests of people of either of the regions. Jammu and Kashmir have its own distinct and peculiar cultural ethos. Providing any opportunity to divisive elements to succeed is not in the interest of people of any of the regions,” they added.
It is high time that people of Kashmir and Jammu understand the gravity of the situation, get united and defeat the evil designs of communal forces. People’s unity is the real answer to such elements who want to divide people on communal lines, they added.
“Government must take stern action against divisive forces, who are trying to disturb the peace and communal harmony in Jammu and Kashmir. A law breaker is a law breaker and must be punished irrespective of his political and ideological affiliations,” they added.
“Those communal elements, who are attacking Kashmiri community outside the state, must be dealt sternly. What message is being served by pushing Kashmiris and especially younger generation to the wall? It is unfortunate that Prime Minister has maintained silence over the grave issue of attacks on Kashmiri community in rest of the country. He should have condemned these attacks,” the trio added.
They added despite advisory from the Union government nothing has been done on ground to stop attacks on Kashmiri community. It seems that as if Kashmiris are expendable. Questions are being raised and genuinely so i.e “is law being used selectively”.
A Governor of a state is brazenly issues racist statement asking people to “boycott everything Kashmiri.” He should be sacked, and a seditious case should be lodged against him, they added.
“We appreciate the role of Left and civil society, who provided all possible help to the Kashmiri community, including students in rest of the country. People of Kashmir expect the leadership, both in the government and in the opposition, civil society and intelligentsia to play their role to maintain communal harmony and safeguard the lives and property of Kashmiris outside the Valley,” they said.
They demanded Central and State governments take all steps to protect Kashmiri residents. Firm action must be taken against those resorting to hate campaign and violence. Let us not allow those, who want to deepen the wedge between people of Kashmir and rest of the country, succeed.
“We appreciate the role of people of Jammu and civil society groups, who have not succumbed to the pressures of communal elements clearly taken a stand against vandalism in Jammu by some fringe elements on Friday. By targeting minority community, fringe elements were vitiating peaceful atmosphere and unity of the state,” they said, adding that Governor should convene urgently meeting of political leaders and prominent citizens to discuss the present situation.

Families of two Kashmir youth detained by UP police vouch for their innocence

Srinagar, Feb 22, : It was virtually mourning in a Kulgam family on Friday after they learnt that their son Shahnawaz Ahmed has been picked up by UP Police from Devbangh Darooul Aloom.

Uttar Pradesh police chief OP Singh claimed that they arrested two persons from Kashmir Shahnawaz Ahmad and Aqib Ahmad Malik and recovered weapons from them. The family of Shahnawaz contested police claim saying he is innocent who name figures nowhere in police records across Kashmir Valley.

Shahnawaz Ahmed who hails from Nunmai Kulgam according to family has taken admission in Devbandh Darul Aloom in 2016-17 for Mufti Course. “My son completed his graduation in 2010 and after that he took admission at a Darul Aloom in Sopore. He is very religious and was keen to complete Mufti Course. Accordingly he got an admission at Devbandh UP,” Mubeena, the mother of Shahnawaz told news agency CNS.

Ghulam Hasan Teli, a carpenter by profession virtually fainted after he heard about the arrest of his son. “You can visit every police station in Kashmir, you will not find the name of my son figuring anywhere. He is religious and that is his crime,” he said.

He said his son is frail who is only concerned with theology. “UP Police really gave us a shock. We urge upon administration to look into the matter and ensure that innocents are trapped in fabricated cases,” he said adding that his son went back to Devbandh in December last year after spending some days at home.

Both the brothers of Shahnawaz are graduates and his two sisters are also pursuing higher education. They said their brother is innocent who should be released without any delay.”

The family of another youth Aqib Ahmed Malik son of Muhammad Akbar from Babgam Pulwama also contested UP Police claim stating he is innocent and has nothing to do with militancy or stone-pelting incidents. “We are shocked to learn Aqib is affiliated with Jaish-e-Muhammad. We request UP police to investigate the matter before giving a militant tag to innocent youth,” the family said.

Traders denounce attacks on Kashmiris

Srinagar, Feb 22, : Traders lowered their shutters on Friday afternoon in Lal Chowk and the adjoining markets as a mark of protest against a string of attacks on Kashmiris in several parts of India from past one week in the aftermath of Pulwama attack.

An eye witness said as soon as clock struck 3:30 pm, the shopkeepers downed their shutters in the commercial hub of Srinagar city to protest attacks and harassment of Kashmiris outside.

The traders also took out a protest march to condemn the attacks and demand security for Kashmiris residing and studying outside.

 

Carrying banners and placards, the protesting traders denounced the attacks on Kashmiri students and traders in some parts of India. They sought stringent punishment against the miscreants and goons who according to them assault Kashmiris in broad day light.

Expulsion of students biggest challenge, taking steps to meet it: CCAK, PSAJK

Srinagar, Feb 22 : Terming the forced expulsion of thousands of Kashmiri students from outside colleges as the biggest challenge before the society, the Coaching Centres’ Association of Kashmir (CCAK) and Private Schools’ Association of Jammu and Kashmir (PSAJK) has called for joint efforts to cope up with the huge problem.

The Association in a joint press conference called for keeping education apolitical and urged the leaders to shun away from doing politics by using the children. “Around 3000 students have arrived and more are coming. It is becoming one of the biggest challenges before us. Majority of these students including girls have been humiliated, intimidated and threatened. There are cases of beatings too. At places, colleges have been forced to rusticate the students and police has been pressurised to register cases against them on frivolous charges,” said G N Var chairman PSAJK.

In such a situation the students are not willing to go back. Even the parents are apprehensive about their wards re-joining the colleges in such an atmosphere. “Maybe the situation cools down in some days but nobody is sure about the future. What if a similar situation arises again? Assembly elections are approaching in the coming months and the atmosphere will be charged and even polarised. In such a sensitive atmosphere of manipulative politics, there is every likelihood that our students can become hostage to the situation again,” said Var. “We have been time and again pleading that education should remain politics neutral.”

The Association said that local political parties and leaders too should limit their words and actions to facilitate the progress and development of education sectors and not do politics on education. “Had our political leaders who are currently raising a hue and cry over the expulsion of Kashmiri students, paid heed to the development of educational infrastructure in Kashmir, this situation would have been largely avoided,” said Var. “When these leaders were in power they never encouraged the emergence of colleges and universities of excellence in the private sector and the result is that Kashmir is an educationally backward region. Every State encouraged the establishment of private college and universities except ours. Even today more than 100 files for the establishment of colleges are pending for want of clearance.”

The Association said that the government lacks education policy for education in private sector. “In 1996 the then government allowed establishment of B.Ed. colleges by relaxing rules. Scores of colleges sprung up and they gradually built their infrastructure. We want government to come to the rescue and relax the rules for establishment of colleges and universities, as a one-time immediate measure. Colleges and private universities, should be allowed to operate from rented accommodations with assurance of development of infrastructure in five or 10 years. Similarly other rules be relaxed too,” said Var. “We assure you that we will be self-sufficient in most of the courses within few years.”

The Association said that outside investors are ready to invest in education institutes and even foreign universities are also eager to collaborate to establish institutes of excellence in Kashmir, if only government gives green signal.

“This will establish a knowledge economy and provide thousands of jobs too,” said Var. “We strongly appeal to the authorities that red-tapism be done away with and independence be given to the new Colleges. Few colleges that we currently have are the small replicas of University of Kashmir as they are being micromanaged. Low fee is set up by the University for them, and the UGC salaries are being imposed for the teachers. This leaves no incentive for the private players. This is why Higher Education is not an attractive sector for investors.”

To tackle the present situation, both the Associations have been working with Professors of KU, IUST, NIT and other institutes. In addition to it, educationists and academicians have also been roped in. “As already CCAK has offered free admission to students in various courses. According to our analysis most of the courses like BTech, BBA, MBA, BCA etc can be taught here by the faculty. The courses like MBBS and BDS need infrastructure. The students who were in the midst of coaching for competitive examinations like NEET, JET, IAS etc will also be provided free admission in coaching centres, as the arrangements have been made to accommodate them.”

The Associations have asked all experts and professors to voluntarily register with them so that an assessment of Human Resource can be made. “We will come to know how much Human Resource we have and what are we lacking. They can be used to teach the students at suitable accommodations,” said Var. “We have trained persons in specialised courses like Nano Technology too, we need to identify and utilise their services at this hour.”

The Association also demanded that elite higher secondary institutes like Green Valley Educational Institute, Kashmir Harvard, JK Public School, R.P. School, SRM Welkin Higher Secondary School, Radiant Public School Islamabad, Dolphin International, Lyceum International Pulwama, Leeds Convent Kulgam, et al which have good infrastructure be allowed to start classes in graduation courses. It is an emergency situation needing out of box solutions. We also appeal KU, Agriculture University, SKIMS, NIT, Auqaf, Hoteliers, vacant school buildings to provide their infrastructure for the classes.

The Associations warned that if the immediate measures are not taken, the situation can go from bad to worse. Coming down heavily on the implementation of Prime Minister Special Scholarship Scheme (PMSSS) in the State, which is biased towards the educational institutes of the state, the association demanded their rules be amended. “They give Rs 1200 crore scholarship for colleges outside J&K. Had they included local colleges in the scholarship, the students would have been safe and the local infrastructure would have also developed,” said Var.

The Association threatened to boycott PMSSS from the coming session if the colleges of the State are not included in the scheme.