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Beyond Religions:Manjot is donating kidney to her Muslim friend Samreen

Hirra Azmat




Srinagar, Nov 29: The iconic Sholay song about everlasting friendship, ye dosti hum nahi todengey, todengey dum agar tera saath na chodengey has found real life meaning in the selfless story of Manjot Singh Kohli, who is donating her kidney to her best friend suffering from a renal failure.

In a noble gesture, Manjot, 23-year-old Sikh girl from Udampur, has decided to donate one of her kidneys to save the life of her closest friend, a Muslim girl, Samreen hailing from Srinagar.

Samreen is currently subjected to dialysis twice a month at SKIMS, Soura.“Unshakeable faith in each other made me take this step,” Manjot gives a confident reply on asking her about the momentous decision.

Manjot learnt about her friend’s ailment after reading a post on Facebook, six months ago after which she left everything behind and rushed to Srinagar.“Samreen never told me directly about her ailment as it would have affected me deeply. We have a mutual friend who works as a journalist. She put a post on Facebook some six months back in which she had mentioned that anybody with B +ve blood wishing to donate his kidney can come forward,” says Manjot, who is also a social and human-rights activist.

On reading the post, Manjot sensed trouble and immediately rang her journalist friend who broke the news to her.“When I read the post, I got an inkling that it is about Samreen. I inquired if she is the same person and my worst fears came true,” says Manjot in a voice laced with emotions.

It took a fraction of a second for Manjot to make this sacrifice for her foul-weather friend, who stood with her through her thick and thin.

“I lost my mother in a car accident in November 2014 who came to visit me when I had been perusing my graduation in Shimla,” says the young activist.

This incident turned her life upside down but she bounced back. In the toughest phase of her life, her only supporter, friend and confidant, Samreen stood by her side.“For me, it was not a hard decision. She was there when there was nobody. I didn’t even take a nano-second to make this decision,” she says.

However, the decision came with a set of challenges posed by her family and the hospital authorities.“The problem came when I had to convince my family as they are emotionally attached to me. They won’t understand the bond we share and my intentions behind this decision,” rues Manjot, who graduated in English honours through IGNOU.

For the last six months, Manjot has been taking care of her friend whose family is going through financial problems. Samreen’s only earning member of the family is her mother, who works as a teacher.

“Her father worked as a tailor in Rajouri. Now he is no longer working there. It’s very difficult of her mother to run the household and manage the medical expenses on a meager income. This was the reason we couldn’t afford a donor from outside the state,” reveals Manjot.

While Samreen is battling for life, Manjot is battling the medical and legal battles as her family is completely against this decision.
“The hospital staff literally tortured me. I am an obese person and suffer from the problem of hypertension. They put me on treatment for hyper-tension and now I am completely fine,” says Manjot.

Manjot was then asked to get the consent of her family—a pre-requisite—before the transplantation.“Medical procedures are almost complete. There are around 100 tests involved and I have cleared all of them. Now, what remains is the legal procedure. They will not perform the surgery until I get a proper permission from my family,”

The 23-year-old is planning to file a petition in Jammu and Kashmir High Court as her last resort.“If my family agrees well and good otherwise it will take around a month to get a legal permission.” says Manjot who presently resides in Jammu.

Was religion a concern for her?“For me, she is a human being first and if god forbid, I am unable to help her then I would live a life-time full of anxiety,” she replies.


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Mujgund gunfight:14, 17 years old among 3 militants killed

Mubashir Bukhari



Srinagar, Dec 9: The intense 18-hour-long gunfight that began Saturday evening in Mujgund area on Srinagar outskirts ended Sunday morning with the killing of the third militant even as a huge battery of government forces blasted multiple houses and shacks near the gunfight site.

The slain militants included two local teenagers – Mudasir Rashid (14) son of Abdul Rashid Parray, and Saqib Bilal Sheikh (17) son of Bilal Ahmad Sheikh, both residents of Hajin area of north Kashmir’s Bandipora district.

The two were missing since August 31 with their families repeatedly appealing the duo to return and vainly asking also the authorities to trace them.

The third militant, as per a spokesperson of the J&K police, was “learnt to be a Pakistani identified as Ali”.

The three militants, the spokesperson said, were affiliated with Lashkar-e-Taiba militant outfit.

The bodies of two locals teenager militants have been handed over to the family for last rites and according to the family, both of them would be interred on Monday.

Briefing about the encounter, he said a joint search operation was launched on Saturday by police, CRPF and army based on a credible input about the presence of militants in Mujgund.

“During the search operation, the search party was fired upon by the hiding militants. The fire was retaliated leading to a gunfight. In the initial exchange of fire one army trooper sustained injuries and was shifted to hospital for medical treatment,” the spokesperson said.

“In the ensuing encounter, three militants were killed and their bodies were retrieved from the site of encounter,” he said adding: “Incriminating materials including arms and ammunition were recovered from the site of encounter. Police has registered a case and initiated investigation in the matter.”

The area, as per the local reports, boomed with loud thuds throughout the Saturday night and Sunday morning as government forces used massive gunfire to kill the lone militant, apparently the foreigner among the trio.

He, as per the reports, kept the forces on tenterhooks by changing locations and kept firing intermittently from different directions.

The two other militants had already been killed late Saturday evening but the forces were not able to retrieve their bodies until the encounter ended.

At least five forces personnel, the reports added, were injured in the exchange of fire although the police only confirmed injuries to one army trooper.

“Three civilians also sustained injuries as the area was in open and the injured were shifted to hospital for medical treatment. They are stated to be stable,” the police spokesperson said.

“Huge quantity of arms and ammunition including rifles were recovered from the site of encounter. All these materials have been taken in the case records for further investigation and probe their complicity in other cases,” the spokesperson added.

“Citizens are requested not to venture inside the encounter zone since such an area can prove dangerous due to stray explosive materials. People are requested to cooperate with police till the area is completely sanitized and cleared of all the explosives materials if any,” he said.

Intense clashes occurred in Mujgund area between civilians and government forces during and after the gunfight.

Several persons were injured during the clashes as scores of youth, as per reports, took to streets after the news of gunfight spread in the area.

Reports said that the injured were shifted to SKIMS Soura and SMHS hospital for treatment.

They added two youth with bullet injuries were brought to SKIMS Soura and three youth were admitted at SMHS hospital one of them with bullet injuries in left thigh while two have suffered pellet injuries.

The injured were identified as Altaf Ahmed Shagoo son of Ghulam Ahmed Shagoo, Shabir Ahmad both residents of HMT and Muneer Ahmad Sheikh of Mujgund.

Clashes also broke out between the protesters and the government forces in Hajin after the news spread about the killing of the local teenager militants.

Reports said that groups of youth took to streets and staged protests soon after the news of the killing reached Hajin.

The youth hurled stones on the forces deployed in the area to prevent protests.

The forces, according to witnesses, resorted to tear gas shelling and pellet firing to disperse the protesting youth.

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Streamline JK’s teaching cadre:SAC approves switchover of SSA teachers to regular cadre



Jammu, Dec 9: In a land mark decision aimed at streamlining the teaching cadre in Jammu and Kashmir, the State Administrative Council (SAC) under the chairmanship of Governor, Satya Pal Malik approved the Action Pan recommended by the Committee constituted vide G.O No 1263-GAD of 2018, Dated 13.08.2018.

The Committee was mandated to devise a comprehensive strategy to review the issues of all school teachers in the School Education department including those funded under the on-going Centrally Sponsored Scheme ‘Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan’ (SSA) and suggest possible solutions

Over the years, School Education department has been facing immense difficulties due to multiple cadres of teachers, requirement of additional funds to meet out salary of both SSA and RMSA teaching faculty and a host of other related issues, which were directly or indirectly impacting upon the quality of education in Government run schools and leading to avoidable chaos and confusion among the teaching fraternity.

To address the issue in its right perspective and humanely, the State Government constituted a Committee vide G.O No 1263-GAD of 2018, Dated 13.08.2018.

The Committee submitted its recommendations in the form of an Action Plan to the Government. The SAC considered the departmental proposal based on the recommendations of the Committee and broadly accepted the Action Plan proposed by the Committee.

The SAC approved the creation of a separate cadre of teachers who will get the pay scale of Rs.29200-92300 (L-5) 7th Pay Commission from 1.09.2018 in the School Education Department.  These posts shall be filled up 100% by selection out of regularized Rehbar-e-Taleem ‘Teachers (RReTs) with qualification “Graduate from any recognized University”. This cadre of teachers is created exclusively for the purpose of adjusting RReTs and will gradually get extinguished/abolished over a period of time.

The School Education Department will amend the Jammu and Kashmir School Education (Subordinate) Service Recruitment Rules, 2008 as may be required to give effect to this decision.

RReTs will transition into teachers as procedure laid down in the Action Plan.

The Action Plan envisages formal merger of 526 posts of Headmasters and 3132 posts of Subject Specific Masters created under RMSA with Headmasters and Masters in the School Education Department, conversion/Up-gradation of existing 4522 direct quota vacant non-teaching posts in different categories as Teachers, creation of 28,363 supernumerary posts of Teachers with the stipulation that these supernumerary posts shall subsist till completion of appointment/transition of eligible RReTsas regular teachers, and thereafter shall cease to exist on the adjustment if these supernumerary posts against normally arising vacancies.

The School Education Department has been authorized as a onetime exception to fill certain vacant posts of lecturers by promotion of eligible PG Teachers/Masters in the relevant disciplines to enable utilization of the resultant vacancies of teachers for appointment/transition of RReTs as Teachers.   This initiative is being taken in the larger interest of the teaching community and purely as a welfare measure.

The School Education Department has been granted one-time exemption for making regularization/confirmation/ promotion of the officers (backlog and fresh) in respect of each gazetted category without referring the cases to the JKPSC/DPC.

The 4522 posts of non-teaching staff shall be restored to their original position as and when they become available after adjusting/subsuming all the supernumerary posts.

The School Education Department will encourage such RReTs as do not possess the requisite qualification to acquire the same within a specific timeframe so as to up-scale them as regular teachers.

Further, all vacancies of lecturers/teachers referred to PSC/ SSB where advertisement notices have not been issued or selection process has not been initiated or written test has not been conducted as on 07.12.2018, shall stand withdrawn.  This shall, however, not apply to the posts for which selection lists have been published or where document verification is in process.

The SAC directed that a Committee of Officers under the Administrative Secretary, School Education Department with Director, School Education Kashmir/Jammu, representatives of General Administration and Finance Department not below the rank of Additional Secretary to Government or equivalent level will oversee the entire process of appointment / transition of RReTs as Teachers.

The School Education Department will nominate a Nodal officer to maintain a complete record of the vacancies of the lecturers/teachers or in the non-teaching category to ensure proper accounting of the posts created / converted / reverted, supernumerary posts, their adjustment against regular posts, vacancies arising from time to time, etc.

The Action Plan also envisages creation of a Human Resource Management (HRM) Branch in the School Education Department, Civil Secretariat to deal with Human Resource Management (HRM).

The Committee of Officers constituted vide Government Order No.1263-GAD of 2018 dated 13.08.2018 will also examine the cases of 7706 under-graduate teachers who do not possess the qualification as ‘Graduate’ for their appointment / transition as regular teachers. The Committee will submit its report to the government within a period of one month.

The landmark decision will enable streamlining the cadre of RReTs by transitioning them in the regular cadre of teachers and meeting the salary deficit of SSA and RMSA teachers, which is over Rs 1400 crores per annum,  out of the state budget. Thus all teachers will henceforth get regular monthly salary on time consequent to the assimilation of various cadres of teachers into one regular teaching cadre. This will result in greater accountability, discipline and capacity building of teachers and improve the quality of education in the state.


Approves setting up of Special Security Force for Guv’s security

Jammu, Dec 9: The State Administrative Council (SAC) under the chairmanship of Governor, Satya Pal MaliK approved the ‘Jammu and Kashmir Governor’s Special Security Force Bill, 2018’’.

The Bill contains provisions related to the constitution and regulation of a separate security force in the State of Jammu and Kashmir for providing proximate security to the Governor, members of his immediate family and matters connected therewith.

The legal framework related to constitution and regulation of a separate security force in the State of Jammu and Kashmir for providing proximate security to the Chief Minister, members of his immediate family and other connected matters, is contained in the Jammu and Kashmir Special Security Group Act, 2000.

There is no provision contained in the said Act related to matters, for providing proximate security to the Governor of State and his immediate family members. A need has been felt to have an effective mechanism in place for constitution and regulation of a separate security force in the State of Jammu and Kashmir for providing proximate security to the Governor and his family members.


Brings in legislation to tackle Benami transactions

Jammu, Dec 9: The State Administrative Council (SAC) under the chairmanship of Governor, Satya Pal Malik approved the ‘Jammu and Kashmir Prohibition of Benami Property Transactions Bill, 2018’.

The Bill is a comprehensive law aimed at tackling Benami transactions in the State. The Bill provides for creation of the requisite administrative structure for enforcement of the law and empowers the Designated Authorities to attach and confiscate any property which is held to be Benami.

Panel provisions incorporated in the Act provide for imprisonment of persons found guilty of offence of Benami transactions which shall not be less than one year extendable to seven years, besides fine equivalent to 25% of the market value of the property can also be imposed.


Approves Code of Civil Procedure Bill

Jammu, Dec 9: The State Administrative Council (SAC) under the chairmanship of Governor, Satya Pal Malik approved the Code of Civil Procedure (Amendment) Bill- 2018.

The Bill seeks to introduce such provisions in the Code of Civil Procedure, Samvat, 1977 which will help in the disposal of cases in a time-bound manner.

These provisions relate to fixing time-frame for filing a written statement and forfeiture of right of defendant to file written statements after the prescribed period.

Besides provision regarding costs have been attuned and a new provision of case hearing management is being introduced.

These modifications are aimed at speedy disposal of civil cases in courts which tend to linger on unnecessarily. Litigants will save time and costs.



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No lasting peace without respect for human rights: Farooq 



Srinagar, Dec 9: National Conference President Farooq Abdullah on Sunday said that there can be no lasting peace or sustainable development without respect for human rights and the rule of law.

In his message on the world human rights day, Farooq said that basic human rights of a man include right to education, right to assembly, right  to profess any religion and above all right to live a dignified life.

“We in National Conference took it upon ourselves to ensure the people of our state all these basic rights. The Naya Kashmir progressive ideology abounds in all the rights and our leadership has been striving hard to ensure people all the rights,” he said.

He said that the hopes for a more just, safe and peaceful world can only be achieved when there is universal respect for the inherent dignity and equal rights of all members of the human beings.

“It was National Conference that made a common peasant master of his land. The revolutionary steps like single line administration, up gradation of medical facilities and granting gender neutral voting rights to all have gone a long way in elevating the living standards of the people of our state,” he said.

He said that the former BJP-PDP led government had abhorrence for human rights and the bruises of people haven’t been embalmed.

“We in National Conference will embalm and ensure all those who stand maimed and bruised are looked after. We owe a sense of commitment to people. We will work tirelessly for all the regions of state. The need of the hour is granting regional and zonal autonomous councils for elevating the living standards of people in the remotes and hilly areas of our state like Chenab region and Pirpanchal region,” he said.

He said that development is a right and that need of the hour is to bring about development that is sustainable and inclusive.

“There can be no peace without development, no development without peace, and no lasting peace or sustainable development without respect for human rights and the rule of law. Everything must go hand in hand and only National Conference can do it,” he said.

Farooq said that state’s four years were lost to political instability and conflict.

“Nothing good was achieved in the past four years. The former regime has left youth disenchanted towards democratic process. The state saw no infrastructure coming up, no up gradation of basic ground level infrastructure,” he said.

Farooq said that time has come when people should vote to make a government that has majority so that steps could be taken that can make a difference to people’s lives in a positive lives.

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