Srinagar, Nov 20: Former champions and Kolkata giants Mohun Bagan rode on a Dipanda Dicka strike in the 70th minute to register their second win of the season over home side and Hero I-League debutants Real Kashmir FC at the TRC Turf ground in Srinagar on Tuesday.
The win takes the Mariners to second in the 12th Hero I-League standings with eight points from four games and kept them unbeaten in the league. Real Kashmir, on the other hand, suffered their second defeat on the trot at home, keeping them on four points from a similar number of games and down to eighth place.
As suggested in pre-match reports both coaches took the opportunity to give first starts of the season to a few players, arguably to test them out before it comes to the business end of the league.
David Robertson of Kashmir handed first starts to as many as three players, Khalid Qayoom and Abhash Thapa in midfield and defence in place of Farhan Ganie and Brian Mascarenhas as well as playing Nagen Tamang as an extra midfielder in place of defender Muhammad Hammad.
Mohun Bagan coach Sankarlal Chakraborty opted for just one change, giving defender Dalraj Singh a start in place of Kim Kima.
The game began in brilliant sunshine and to a packed house as has now become the norm at the TRC, but in spite of a lot of energy and commitment shown by both sides, there were no clear-cut chances created in the first 40 minutes of the game.
Mohun Bagan in particular despite having more possession, seemed to be finding it difficult coming to terms with the conditions and the pitch.
It was the hosts however which could be credited with the first chance of the half when Tamang’s free-kick in the 18th minute saw Scottish defender Mason Robertson meet the ball first with his head, but the timing of the connection made the ball lob over the Bagan goal.
Bagan then got their first chance In the 43rd minute, when Danish Farooq brought Cameroonian Dicka down in a dangerous position outside the Kashmir box. Ugandan Henry Kisseka’s effort from the setpiece was brilliant but missed by a whisker.
The second half witnessed a more frantic start and Kashmir, in particular, began with a lot more purpose.
In the 53rd minute, after Sourav Das for Mohun Bagan penetrated past three Kashmir players into the box but could not make much headway beyond that, Ivorian Gnohere Krizo’s long-range effort for Kashmir went just wide.
Then Dicka in the 60th minute, saw a header go just wide after Abhishek Ambekar had put in a cross from the left flank.
The Cameroonian was not to be denied however and struck in the 70th minute to give Bagan the lead. Kisseka it was who got hold of the ball on the left flank and found his strike mate in between Kashmir defenders Ravanan and Loveday with a wonderful cross. Dicka made no mistake with his header slotting the ball into the back of the net, wrong-footing keeper Bilal in the process.
Kisseka himself then got a chance to double the lead in the 78th minute, when after combining brilliantly with the goalscorer Dicka, he found himself on the end of a cross in front of the goalkeeper, but the coach’s son Mason made an important timely intervention.
David Robertson had played all his cards bringing in Brian Mascarenhas in place of Nagem Talang at left wing-back for more purposeful crosses as well Nadong Bhutia in the strike force and Farhan Ganie in midfield and also pushed Mason forward in the last gasp effort. The defender even created a few good openings, but it was too late perhaps.
In the 63rd minute, Sankarlal brought in William Lalnunfela in place of Pintu Mahata who had an off –day and Nagem Tamang also went out for Kashmir with Brian Mascarenhas coming in.
Hero of the Match Dicka, the top goal scorer of the Hero I-League for the past two seasons, scored his third of this campaign on the day to earn the victory in front of 12,760-strong home supporters. He got a well-deserved rest with just under five minutes to go and Sankarlal bolstered his midfield bringing in Shilton D’Silva. He even provided game time to William Lalnunfela, bringing him on in the 63rd minute replacing Pintu Mahata, who had an off day.
William was again replaced in the dying minutes with new recruit Abinash Ruidas with the game all but sewn up.
Non-NC governments in J&K weakened State’s Special Status: Omar
Beerwah, Jan 16 : Jammu and Kashmir National Conference Vice President Omar Abdullah on Wednesday said that state’s special status was tampered with whenever NC remains away from the power corridors of the state.
While speaking to a gathering of party workers at a one day party convention in Beerwah constituency he said that non-NC governments in J&K have proved detrimental to the special status of state. “The basic structure of the state was entirely obliterated by the opportunistic forces that got a field day because of our absence. From 1953 to 1974, 37 amendments were made to the state constitution making a pale shadow of what it used to be before 1953,” he said.
Omar said the very identity of our state is facing an onslaught from all sides and the severity of the situation demands a strong mandated government of National Conference that will put up a strong front for safeguarding our special position. “Prime Minister Narender Modi insulted Late Mufti Syed in an open public platform. This would have impossible in a scenario if PDP had the numbers to run the government on its own. We have never seen such a thing happening in other states, where a sitting chief minister was publically humiliated,” he said adding that primary reason for that was a fractured mandate compounded with the fact that other alliance partners are always bound by central whip of party, which severely affects the working and maneuverability of government.
Omar said, “Coalition governments in J&K has proved detrimental to state’s interests and that the need of the hour is to have a strong nucleus to carry forward the agenda of peace, development and reconciliation.”
Among others Political Adviser to Omar Abdullah Tanvir Sadiq, Prof Abdul Majeed Mattoo, Muhammad Ibrahim Mir, Mirwaiz Central Kashmir Molvi Lateefullah, and Muhammad Amin Banday were also present on the occasion.
Omar asserted that National Conference is the only party with a clear road map to address internal and external dimensions of J&K.
Later Omar Abdullah visited many areas of the constituency amidst heavy snowfall. He made stopovers at various places where people apprised him about the issues concerning the constituency. He gave them a patient hearing and promised all possible help.
Governor’s statement on Operation All Out far from reality: Joint Hurriyat
Srinagar, Jan 16:Joint Hurriyat comprising Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Muhammad Yasin Malik has termed the recent assertions of Governor Satya Pal Malik that “there was nothing like Operation All-Out” as far from reality and truth and stated that Home Minister Rajnath Singh and Indian army chief General Bipin Rawat have time and again claimed that anti-militancy operations in Jammu and Kashmir were being carried out under “Operation All-Out.”
The leadership in a statement issued asked, “If it isn’t Operation All Out then what term would Governor like to give to daily cordon and search operations (CASO) conducted in South, North and Central Kashmir even in such harsh winter when youth are chased and killed while homes are blown up, booking any Kashmiri including youth activists leaders under draconian PSAs and shifting them to jails in and outside the state, confining resistance leaders to homes or jails arbitrarily at will and curbing their space and to connect with people especially those that are killed. Even Kashmiri students studying outside are harassed and targeted”.
Joint Hurriyat said that there are footprints of Indian army and other forces in every nook and corner of the Valley and genuine dissent and people’s voice regarding their sentiment is muzzled forcibly while every peaceful political space and activity is barred or foiled by the state through its military might.
They said that resistance leadership is confined to their homes for months and years together and that the “ultimate repression” is on full display across Kashmir, especially since past three years. “In fact, an all-out assault has been launched on all fronts including the judiciary to quell people’s aspirations and challenge our very existence as a nation,” they said.
“Militarization of the valley and unbridled powers given to forces under black laws especially AFSPA is the main reason behind the worst form of state aggression in Kashmir,” the leaders said.
The leadership said that Rajnath Singh and General Bipin Rawats claim that 200 armed youth are active in Kashmir; seven lakh Indian soldiers are present here. “What justification is there to keep over seven lakh forces in Kashmir to fight this minuscule number, except exert control over people by force?”
Joint Hurriyat said as per the figures available with the resistance camp, 2018 witnessed worst ever rights violations in Kashmir in recent past as 355 armed youth and 161 civilians were killed. “If this isn’t that operation all-out, then what is it?” they asked.
The leadership said that in last year, 4524 civilians especially youth were injured with lethal pellets while as the eyesight of 724 youth was snatched as pellets ruptured their eyes. “How can GoI justify this all?” the leadership questioned.
It said that the GoI’s targeting of the state subject law and article 35-A in a series of petitions lodged in Supreme Court in a bid to change the disputed status of the State is another form of this operation.
Meanwhile, the leadership said that as the hearing in 35-A is slated for January in the Supreme Court, the JRL is in constant touch with various sections of society that includes civil society, traders, academics religious groups, political parties, employees and other sections and a joint program will be announced as the date for hearing is announced.
The leadership said that entire Kashmir in unison will fight every single bid aimed at changing the disputed nature and the demography of the Muslim majority state
To protect JK’s identity, we have to remain united: Farooq Abdullah
Srinagar, Jan 16: Jammu and Kashmir National Conference President Dr. Farooq Abdullah on Wednesday asserted that the choice of the people in the forth coming elections will decide their future.
While addressing a meet of party functionaries, workers at Barthana, Batamallo he said, “The state is faced with a critical situation. We are caught between devil and deep sea. And at this time the choice of the people will act as a pointer towards their future,” adding, “We have to show unity amongst ourselves to illustrate how passionate we are about our identity,” he said.
Asserting that there is no substitute to democracy and that in a democracy each life matters, he said, “People are yearning for development and peace. I am sure that with Omar in the forefront of the government, the state will be bequeathed with much needed peace and stability,” adding that safeguarding the interests of the state and its people forms the core of National Conference.
Dr Farooq also paid obeisance at the shrine of Shah Wali Sahab (RA). He prayed for peace and prosperity of the state.
General Secretary Haji Ali Muhammad Sagar, senior leader Choudhary Muhammad Ramzan, Central Secretary Irfan Ahmad Shah, District president Peer Afaq, Provincial Secretary Showkat Mir and Advisor to Dr Farooq Mushtaq Guroo were also present on the occasion.
Dr Farooq while addressing the workers, who had gathered there braving the chill and incessant snowfall said, “Sher-e-Kashmir always wanted India and Pakistan to live in bonhomie, and that they always wanted all the traditional road connections to be resumed for the benefit of divided families,” adding that National Conference has always been the votary of peace between India and Pakistan.
Dr Farooq sought support of people for ex MLA Batamaloo Irfan Shah. “Service and sacrifice has been the motto of our party and I believe the Irfan shah including our other party functionaries will continue to work for the people keeping in view with the legacy of the party and its founding members,” he said.