Omar Abdullah meets prominent Islamic Scholars, experts of Kargil

Omar Abdullah

Srinagar Nov 02: The Jammu and Kashmir National Conference Party Vice President Omar Abdullah met prominent Islamic Scholars in Kargil on the last day of his Kargil tour.

The Party Vice President, who has been on a two day long tour of Kargil District met President Anjuman Jamiat-ul-Ulama Isna Asharia Shaikh Nazir Mehdi Mohammadi Sahib and other Islamic scholars and luminaries.

He also met with Chief Patron of the Imam Khomeni Memorial Trust Shaikh Mohammad Mohaqeeq Sahib and other Scholars of the trust.

Omar Abdullah meets prominent Islamic Scholars, experts of Kargil 1
Omar Abdullah in Kragil

Both the meetings focussed on the issues faced by the people of Kargil. Party Vice President applauded their efforts in creating synergy among diverse sections of people in Kargil. He emphasised that the realisation of unity in diversity was the key towards fighting the challenges faced by the people of Ladakh.

Earlier Omar Abdullah also paid obeisance at the revered Shrine of the Founder of Anjuman-e-Sahibuz Zaman Hazrat Syed Haidar Rizavi (RA) at Sankoo, Kargil. On the occasion , he also met with Chief Patron Anjuman Sahibuz Zaman Syed Muhammad Razavi Sahib.

He was accompanied by Provincial President Nasir Aslam Wani, Dy Political Secretary Mudassar Shahmiri and local party functionaries.(KNS)

First full-fill the promises made in the earlier Back to Village programmes: Er. Nazir Yatoo

Er Nazir Yatoo

Srinagar October 30: J&K Aam Aadmi Party vice President Kashmir, Er. Nazir Yatoo has asked the government to full fill the promises made in the earlier back to village programmes related to developmental works. In a statement issued, Er. Yatoo, said, that government should not do this exercise for the sake of PR and optics but actually redress the issues of the people.

Yatoo also said that government should remain cautious to not instil a sense of futility amongst the people in the novel concept of back to village and the buck to not make it seem useless rests on the government itself.(KNS)

AAP appoints Harshdev Singh as chairman of 15-member state committee in J&K

AAP appoints Harshdev Singh as chairman of 15-member state committee in J&K 2

Srinagar: The Aam Aadmi Party’s (AAP) Jammu and Kashmir unit on Monday constituted a 15-member State Coordination Committee with Harshdev Singh designated as the chairman of the committee.
As per a communique, a copy of which lies with the news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO), Mehraj Malik and Dr Ghulam Mustafa Khan have been appointed as the Co-chairmen of the State Coordination Committee.

The communique stated that Deep Singh, Nasir Ali Kochak, Yashpal Kundal, Om Prakash Khajuria, Dr Nawab Nasir Aman, Surender Singh Shingari, Prof (Dr) Farooq Ahmad Aga, Sheema Farooqi, Taranjit Singh Tony, Zafarullah Sheikh, Ashok Karihalu and Dr Touseef Ahmed have been designated as the members of the committee.

It added that State Incharge- will be the ex-officio chairman of the committee and Election Incharge- Jammu, Election Incharge- Kashmir, Prabhari- Jammu, Prabhari- Kashmir, Province President- Jammu, Province President- Kashmir will be the ex-officio member of this committee.

Senior INC leader Karan Singh demands early Assembly election in Jammu Kashmir

Senior INC leader Karan Singh demands early Assembly election in Jammu Kashmir 3

Srinagar: Senior Congress leader Dr Karan Singh on Monday demanded early assembly elections in Jammu & Kashmir and said that he was glad to see the world famous Dal Lake cleaned for the first time.

Talking to reporters on the sidelines of the AICC presidential voting at party’s Srinagar headquarters, Singh said that democracy cannot be ensured without the elections in Jammu and Kashmir, so all parties here have been demanding immediate conduct of the polls, news agency KNO reported.

“We have been hearing that the elections will be conducted in March next year, but there is no official confirmation yet. Congress and other parties have been demanding early polls and they should be held at an earliest,” he said. 

About the inclusion of non-local voters in J&K, he said that there is confusion over it and the things are not clear, so he cannot comment anything on the issue.

Singh said the government has been making claims about the developmental progress in the Union Territory, but on ground it may take some time to see the impact. “Dal Lake for the first time is cleaned. I am happy to see Dal Lake clean as I have personally witnessed this development,” he said.

Himachal Goes To Polls On Nov 12; Gujarat Announcement Later

Himachal Goes To Polls On Nov 12; Gujarat Announcement Later 4
New Delhi- Elections to the Himachal Pradesh assembly will be held on November 12, the Election Commission announced on Friday.The counting of votes will be on December 8, Chief Election Commissioner Rajiv Kumar told a press conference here.

The Commission did not announce the elections for the Gujarat assembly, the term of which ends on February 18, 2023.

Over 55 lakh voters are eligible to exercise their franchise for 68 assembly seats in Himachal Pradesh, Kumar said.

The CEC said the Commission was following past precedence in keeping the announcing in abeyance the schedule for Gujarat assembly.

There are 1.86 lakh first-time voters, 1.22 lakh aged 80-plus and 1,184 voters who are above 100 years of age.

Himachal Pradesh has a 68-member assembly and the BJP had won a clear majority by winning 44 seats in the 2017 elections. The Congress managed to win 21 seats, Independents bagged two seats and the CPI(M) emerged victorious on one seat.

In percentage terms, the BJP won 48.79 per cent of the total valid votes, followed by the Congress (41.68 per cent) and Independents (6.34 per cent).

DC Jammu withdraws order allowing voter registration for those living in the district for over a year

DC Jammu withdraws order allowing voter registration for those living in the district for over a year 5

The Jammu administration on Wednesday withdrew a notification issued two days earlier, directing revenue officials to provide residence certificates to those living in the district for more than a year in order to register them as voters.

The directive had received criticism from political parties in Kashmir, who alleged that it was an attempt to influence the upcoming Assembly elections, likely to be held next year.

The new order stated that the directive has been withdrawn and should be treated as being void.

Avny Lavasa, the district poll officer and deputy commissioner of Jammu, had said in the earlier order that voters were facing difficulties to register themselves as many of them did not have proof of residence prescribed by the Election Commission such as Aadhaar card, passport and bank passbook.

The revision of electoral rolls in Jammu and Kashmir is significant as the exercise is being carried out for the first time since the abrogation of its special status.

Until August 2019, when the status was revoked, voting rights were restricted to those defined as permanent residents of Jammu and Kashmir.

Former chief minister Mehbooba Mufti had called the latest decision a first step toward Centre’s “colonial settler project” in the region.

Mufti also accused the BJP of creating religious and regional divisions between Jammu and Kashmir and urged the Dogras and the Kashmiris to thwart such attempts.

The National Conference had claimed that the move was a part of the Centre’s plan to add 25 lakh non-voters in Jammu and Kashmir. “BJP is scared of the elections and knows it will lose badly,” the party tweeted. “People of J&K must defeat these conspiracies at the ballot box.”

In August, an uproar had erupted after Jammu and Kashmir Chief Electoral Officer Hirdesh Kumar said that that the Union Territory could get 25 lakh more voters. That included those originally from outside Jammu and Kashmir, such as migrant workers and security forces, but living in the region.(SCROLL)

Mehbooba Mufti takes a dig on latest ECI order

Mehbooba Mufti

SRINAGAR: PDP president Mehbooba Mufti on Wednesday flayed the Election Commission’s order for registration of new voters in Jammu, charging that the Centre’s “colonial settler project” has been initiated in the region.

The former J-K chief minister said the BJP’s alleged attempts to create religious and regional divisions between Jammu and Kashmir must be “thwarted” because “whether its a Kashmiri or a Dogra, safeguarding our identity and rights will be possible only if we put up a collective fight”.

“ECI’s latest order for registration of new voters makes it clear that GOIs colonial settler project has been initiated in Jammu. They will bear the first blow to Dogra culture, identity, employment & business,” she charged on Twitter.

Her remarks come after authorities in Jammu on Tuesday authorised tehsildars (revenue officials) to issue certificate of residence to those residing in the winter capital for more than one year to facilitate their entry in the ongoing special summary revision of electoral rolls.

Talking to reporters in Kulgam district in south Kashmir, Mufti said her party has been saying for the last many years now that the “BJP has an ‘illegitimate intent’ behind the abrogation of Article 370”.

“Their aim is to change the population ratio in J-K. It will start in Jammu when a sea of people will come to Jammu from outside, which will not only harm the Dogra culture there, but the business, employment and resources there will be attacked. The crime rate there has increased manifold since they opened the doors for the outsiders,” she alleged.

“But, the people of J-K should understand that our future, destiny and our goal is the same. The way the people of Kargil and Leh, Ladakh, foiled the BJP’s divide and rule policy, and stood united to secure their land and jobs, similarly, the people of J-K have to stand united to foil the BJP’s illegitimate intentions, because outsiders, who do not even have a house, will get to vote which means reducing the importance of the vote of the people of J-K,” she said.

Mufti claimed that the delimitation of constituencies in J-K was done in such a way that the BJP benefits from it. “But, despite that, they (BJP) feel the people of Jammu are against them as the people of Jammu have understood that the BJP uses them for their electoral benefits. So, they have come up with this voter law which is nowhere else in the country,” she said.

District Election Officer and Deputy Commissioner, Jammu, Avny Lavasa had passed the directive on electoral rolls after taking serious note of some eligible voters facing hardships in registration as voters for non-availability of required documents.

The Special Summary Revision of electoral rolls has been started in the Union Territory with effect from September 15 for registration of new voters, deletion, correction, transposition of voters who have migrated, died since last summary revision, amid serious concern expressed by various political parties over the inclusion of non-locals as voters.

The National Conference (NC) said the BJP is “scared” of the elections and knows it will lose badly.
“The Government is going ahead with its plan to add 25 lakh non-local voters in J&K and we continue to oppose this move. BJP is scared of the elections & knows it will lose badly. People of J&K must defeat these conspiracies at the ballot box,” the NC said in a tweet.

Peoples Conference said the DC Jammu’s order on facilitating registration of non-locals as electors was “highly suspicious”.

“The latest order by DC Jammu authorising revenue officials to issue certificate of residence to outsiders residing in Jammu for more than one year is highly suspicious aimed at enabling them to vote. This goes against the SC judgement on the issue.

“The onus of proving our suspicions wrong yet again lies on the ECI and the J&K administration. They must clarify if such a directive is permissible,” the party said on Twitter. PTI

J&K Assembly Polls: Congress Promises Special Role To Youngsters

J&K Assembly Polls: Congress Promises Special Role To Youngsters 6

Jammu: Jammu and Kashmir Congress chief Vikar Rasool Wani asked the party’s young workers on Saturday to work hard for strengthening the organisation in the Union Territory, promising a special role for them in the next Assembly polls.

Wani said this at a daylong convention of the Congress in Kathua district.

“Youngsters need to make strenuous efforts to strengthen the party at the grassroot level. They will be assigned special roles in the coming election. They will get their due share,” he said.

A Congress spokesperson said the objective of the convention was to mobilise public opinion to strengthen the party at the grassroot level as also to highlight the BJP government’s wrong policies, especially in Jammu and Kashmir.

“The Congress will make the role of the youngsters more vibrant in order to nurture them for future challenges,” Wani said.

He alleged that over the last eight years, in the name of “achhe din” (good days), the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has misled the people of the country.

“Farmers are suffering instead of getting double income, the unemployment rate is growing like never before, the backbone of the common people is broken due to inflation and a skyrocketing rise in the prices of essential commodities,” the Congress leader said.

He accused the saffron party of playing with the sentiments of those who voted it to power.

“People are not happy with its policies and the government has proved to be a failure. We have taken to the streets against the governance deficit, the lack of development and the failure of the government to deliver on the promises made to the people of Jammu and Kashmir,” Wani said.

Addressing the gathering, All India Congress Committee (AICC) joint secretary and Jammu and Kashmir in-charge Manoj Yadav urged the members of the public to join the party in its fight against the BJP-led Centre’s “anti-people policies, misrule and mismanagement”.

Yadav said the Congress will vigorously fight against the “wrong policies” of the government to ensure justice and relief to the common people.

Panel set up to counter move to include non-locals as voters in J&K: PAGD

Panel set up to counter move to include non-locals as voters in J&K: PAGD 7

Jammu: A 14-member committee has been set up to chalk out the strategy as regards any attempt of “manipulation and inclusion” of non-locals in the revised electoral rolls of Jammu and Kashmir, the People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration (PAGD) said on Saturday.

The panel has members from the five PAGD constituents and several other political parties such as the Congress, the Shiv Sena, the Dogra Swabhiman Sangathan Party (DSSP) and the Dogra Sadar Sabha (DSS).
Announcing the formation of the committee, nearly a month after arriving at a consensus on the issue at a meeting chaired by former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Farooq Abdullah here, PAGD spokesperson M Y Tarigami said National Conference (NC) MP Justice (retd) Hasnain Masoodi will be the panel’s convenor.

The PAGD, an amalgam of five political parties — NC, PDP, CPI(M), CPI and the Awami National Conference (ANC) — is campaigning for the restoration of the special status of the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir.

Besides Masoodi, the other members of the committee include working president of Jammu and Kashmir Congress Raman Bala, former MP Sheikh Abdul Rehman, NC provincial president (Jammu) Rattan Lal Gupta, People’s Democratic Party (PDP) leaders Mehboob Beg and A S Reen, former minister and DSSP president Chowdhary Lal Singh and former minister and DSS president Gulchain Singh Charak, Tarigami said.

He said Shiv Sena’s Jammu and Kashmir unit chief Manish Sawhney, CPI(M) leader Hari Singh, CPI leader G M Mizrab, ANC president Muzaffar Ahmad Shah, International Democratic Party president I D Khujuria and Jammu and Kashmir People’s Movement leader M Hussain are the other members of the panel.
Tarigami said the committee was formed after deliberations and consultations, in accordance with a decision taken at a meeting of senior leaders of various political parties under Abdullah’s chairmanship in Jammu on September 10, to set up a panel to chalk out the future strategy on the issue of any attempt at manipulating and including non-locals in the revised electoral rolls.

Hardening its stand on the issue of inclusion of non-locals as voters in the Union Territory despite a clarification from the administration, the PAGD held two meetings — one in Srinagar on August 22 and another in Jammu on September 10.

The issue surfaced when the then chief electoral officer Hirdesh Kumar said in August that Jammu and Kashmir is likely to get around 25 lakh additional voters, including outsiders, after the special summary revision of the electoral rolls being held for the first time after the abrogation of Article 370 of the Constitution.

Following an outcry, the administration clarified that “this revision of electoral rolls will cover existing residents of the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir and the increase in numbers will be of the voters who have attained the age of 18 years as of October 1, 2022, or earlier”.

“All of us are together to stop the onslaught that is taking place on Jammu and Kashmir (since the abrogation of Article 370 in August 2019). This (giving voting rights to people from outside) is the biggest among all and it is not acceptable to us,” Abdullah had told reporters in Jammu after chairing the “all-party” meet.

Asked why were they not satisfied with the clarification from the administration, Abdullah had said, “Which institution is running in a right way? The then governor Satya Pal Malik had told us nothing will happen to Article 370 prior to the August 5, 2019 development.”

“The LG is sitting here…. The prime minister chaired an all-party meeting (in June last year) and a decision was taken that ‘Dilli ki doori’ (the distance from Delhi) as well as ‘dil ki doori’ (the distance from the heart) will be bridged and prisoners will be released. Tell me about anyone who has been released. And they are implementing new laws every day. Therefore, all of us here feel that rights are under attack and we are here to counter that attack,” Abdullah had said. PTI

Farooq Abdullah issues ‘dossier’, lists development under NC’s rule

Farooq Abdullah

At Baramulla rally, Amit Shah had challenged NC to reveal report card of 75 years

Srinagar: National Conference president Farooq Abdullah on Thursday rejected Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s charge on regional parties’ links with separatism in Kashmir, saying the NC made sacrifices and many of its leaders and workers were killed by militants during the past 35 years.

“I do not want to be sidetracked by some of the other things that Shah said about guns and stones. The sacrifices of my colleagues over the last 35 years where scores of NC leaders and workers have been killed or injured by these very guns Amit Shah ji accused us of distributing is the only answer this accusation needs,” Abdullah said in a five-page statement.

At a public rally in the Valley on Wednesday, Shah had said there were two models available for the people — one of Prime Minister Modi which talks about development, peace and unity, and increases employment avenues, and the other one is the Gupkar model which let the Pulwama attack happen.

The Gupkar model brings Pakistani militants, while the Modi model brings Rs 56,000 crore worth of investment on the ground which will provide five lakh jobs, he said “In the Gupkar model, youth get stones, machine guns, but in Modi model, youth get IIT, AIIMS, NIFT, NEET,” he said.

Abdullah issued a white paper on development undertaken in Jammu and Kashmir during the rule of “Abdullah and Sons” — as Shah referred to the family in his speech at a rally in Baramulla district — to counter the allegations of corruption.

“Yesterday, Home Minister Amit Shah Ji asked me to account for the development that took place during the years the National Conference has been in power. He was trying to suggest that nothing had been achieved (and) that the NC had wasted its time in office with nothing to show,” the NC president, who has been chief minister of the erstwhile state four times, said in the “dossier” on development under his party’s rule.

Enumerating major steps taken by National Conference founder and his father Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah as the head of the state, Farooq Abdullah said this list is by no means complete but just a snapshot of some of the works done.

Among other things, he listed the institution of Single-Line Administration, abolition of landed estates and giving land to landless peasants, free education up to university level, establishment of the University of Jammu and Kashmir, adult education centers, Jabri schools for children and constitution of district development boards constituted in 1970s.

The other steps taken by the NC government included setting up the Gujjar and Bakarwal Advisory Board, tertiary care hospital SKIMS, agricultural universities in Jammu and Srinagar, government colleges for women and 50 per cent reservation for women in medical and dental colleges, he said.

Panchayat Raj Institutions and urban local bodies were established and their elections held during the NC regimes, which also made Jammu and Kashmir the first state in the sub-continent to have universal adult franchise set at the age of 18, he said.

Allocation of the first pay commission at par with central government employees, mobile schools for the Gujjar community, setting up arts emporia to support local artisans and portray the rich art of J&K, support for small scale and medium size industries through SICOP and SIDCO were other steps taken between 1947 and 1989, he said.

During Farooq Abdullah’s last tenure as chief minister, he claimed that nearly 6,000 industrial units were established while power projects like Baglihar, Uri and Dul Hasti projects were set up to generate 1770 MW electricity.

More than 3,600 new school buildings were constructed, 1.65 lakh youths were given employment while projects like Gondola Cable Car Corporation were added to tourist attractions, he said.
During the six year period, Jammu and Kashmir became a milk-surplus state with production almost doubling to 6.66 lakhs metric tons in 2001, he said.

The “dossier” listed the steps taken during the tenure of Omar Abdullah as chief minister including the “strengthening” of Panchayati Raj Institutions, Public Services Guarantee Act, Right to Information Act, reconstitution of Accountability Commission, and constitution of Vigilance Commission, 3rd Party Monitoring of development works, e-Tendering and e-Purchasing.

“Nearly 1.75 lakh jobs were provided to youth which included teachers, police personnel, Anganwadi workers…7000 additional posts were created for upgraded schools, he added.

Farooq Abdullah said Jammu and Kashmir has witnessed eras of development, ushering in political, economic and social empowerment.

“Despite the decades of turmoil, J&K state rose to the top among Indian states in terms of major development indices,” he said.

“The list could be broader, more exhaustive. Today the literacy rate in J&K is 77 percent. Infant mortality is less than 20, maternal mortality is 46. Life expectancy is 74 years. Population growth rate is 11 percent. The incumbent regime has and may again claim credit for all of this but propaganda and facts are two different things.

“Ultimately people will be the judge of what has and hasn’t been achieved. Perhaps now Amit Shah ji can share with the people of J&K what has been achieved in the last 3.5 years of central rule, he said. PTI