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Conspiracy being hatched to weaken Kashmir-Delhi relationship: Omar

Mudassir Kuloo

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Srinagar, Mar 7: National Conference vice president, Omar Abdullah, Thursday said that a “conspiracy was being hatched” to weaken the relationship between Kashmir and New Delhi.
“When Indians don’t accept Kashmiris then how can they expect that Kashmiris will say they are an integral part of India? You want land of Kashmir but not its people,” Omar said in his address at party’s headquarters here, where former PDP leader Dr Mohammad Shafi Wani joined the National Conference.
“We welcomed when Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke against attacks on Kashmiris yet THEY continue unabated. He has failed to execute his words or nobody listens to him. It seems his words are just assurances as a Jumla,” the former chief minister said.
“It seems a conspiracy is being hatched to weaken the relationship between Kashmir and New Delhi rather than strengthening.”
Omar was referring to thrashing of two Kashmiri vendors in Uttar Pradesh on Wednesday, a video of which had gone viral and triggered a lot of social media ire.
Modi last month condemned the attacks on Kashmiri students. Even Supreme Court also directed states to ensure safety of Kashmiris.
Omar said they did not question the instrument of accession. “We always said whatever we will achieve that is under the constitution. What constitution and laws you are talking about when Kashmiris are being beaten up under the national flag. Modi and his colleagues have to respond,” the former chief minister, said.
He said that Kashmiris were being harassed and threatened across the state.
“Yesterday two Kashmiri dry fruit vendors were thrashed. They had posted nothing provocative. We won’t tolerate that innocent people are harassed or beaten up. These BJD, VHP groups want to send a message that Kashmir is part of India not Kashmiris,” he said.
Omar said his grandfather Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah had predicted that there would be a political party in every street to divide Kashmiris.
“Why is third front being formed only in Kashmir not in Ladakh and Jammu? Even young people float their own political parties. It seems it is being done deliberately,” Omar said, apparently referring to the young bureaucrat turned politician Shah Faesal, who has announced floating a new party.
The National Conference leader said that although the threat of war between India and Pakistan is evading but people in Kashmir are worried about the future.
“Nobody knows what will happen tomorrow. People are asked not to visit Kashmir. People associated with the tourism have been rendered jobless. At least 800 trucks laden with fruits are not allowed to export outside Kashmir,” he said.
Omar claimed that ban on Jamaat-e-Islami would further deteriorate the situation in the state. “Arrests are being made under a conspiracy. It won’t help Kashmir. There was ban on JeI in 1990 but that did not help in improving the situation, which later was revoked by Farooq Abdullah in 1996. We might have differences with JeI but the ban won’t benefit the state,” he said.


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Principal’s ‘custodial killing’: Probe officer meets family, locals

Global News Service

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Srinagar, Mar 23: Assistant Commissioner Revenue (ACR) Pulwama Qazi Masood probing the “custodial killing” of a school principal Saturday met the victim’s family in Awantipora area of Pulwama district.
Rizwan Asad Pandit, the Principal of Sabir Abdullah Public School Tral, was picked up by the police from his home late on March 17 during a raid and was killed in police custody at the Cargo Building two days later, according to his family.
Although the police had initially admitted that Rizwan had “died” in custody and that the matter was being probed under “procedure laid down in Section 176 of CRPC,” it later filed an FIR against him for “escape or attempts to escape from custody”, lending a new twist to the case.
The magisterial inquiry that was ordered in Srinagar was also closed and a fresh probe ordered in Pulwama district and a report sought in “four weeks.”
“Government has appointed me as an inquiry officer, I assured the family that I will conduct the fair investigation into the case,” the inquiry officer Qazi Masood told GNS after meeting Rizwan’s family members and local residents.
Masood said he has sought a report from SP Awantipora on why and how Rizwan was detained and the circumstances that led to his death.
“I have also sought a postmortem report from the SP,” the officer said.
Meanwhile, reports said that soon after the inquiry officer arrived in the area and met the family members, locals held a protest demonstration demanding stern action against the guilty.

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Civil society, traders, Bar demand special inquiry commission

Syed Nashir Ali Gillani

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Srinagar, Mar 23: Kashmir business community, civil society, and High Court Bar Association on Saturday asked Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Paul Malik to set-up an independent Special Commission of inquiry in the custodial killing of Awantipora school teacher Rizwan Asad Pandit.
Addressing a press conference in Srinagar, they said that there have been countless instances of inquiries being ordered in killings without any results.
“To deter future violations, we appeal to the Governor for setting up of a time-bound Independent Special Commission of Inquiry,” they said.
The members said that till the time the commission submits its report, it would serve justice if the case is treated to be one of custodial killing and all persons associated with it are put behind bars and kept away from active duty.
“Such inquiries, suffering from institutional bias and state interference, have rarely served the interests of justice,” they said.
“We have a reason to believe that this killing would also suffer the same fate and the killers would again roam free to kill, more confident in the fact that their crimes will never be brought to account,” they said.
They said that the repeated perpetration of serious violations of human rights and humanitarian law needs in-depth fact-finding and investigation.
On Tuesday, Rizwan Asad Pandit, a 29-year-old school teacher, died inside the Jammu and Kashmir’s CARGO camp in Srinagar.
He was picked up for questioning from his home in Awantipora on Sunday.
The family had said that his body bore evidence of being subjected to extreme physical violence.
The press conference was jointly held by KCC&I, High Court Bar Association, KTMF, KEA, KTMF (R), FCIK(A), FCIK(M), JKSECC, KCSDS, KHARA, CCIK, All Transport Welfare Association, Kashmir Valley Fruit Growers Dealers Association, Houseboat Owners Association, KHAROF, Pvt School Association, Kashmir Bakers Association, All Kashmir Chemist & Distributors Association, Hoteliers Club, All Traders & Transporters Coordination Committee, All J&K Taxi Owners Association, Association Of Kashmir Tour, Environmental Protection Group, Shehr E Khaas Coordination, Beopar Mandal S R Gunj, Rehabilitation Alliance, and Batamaloo Traders Association.

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ED imposes Rs 14.4 lakh penalty on Geelani

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Srinagar, Mar 22: The Enforcement Directorate (ED) Friday imposed Rs 14.4 lakh penalty, on Hurriyat (G) chairman Syed Ali Shah Geelani for “illegally” possessing foreign exchange of around $10,000, news agency PTI reported.
After completion of the probe and adjudication proceeding, the ED an order on Wednesday under the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA), levying the penalty and confiscating forex of $10,000 that was allegedly recovered from Geelani, they said.
The ED will also impose a penalty on Yasin Malik, Chairman of Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) and confiscate foreign exchange recovered from him. The adjudication proceedings against Malik are in progress.
On Wednesday, a Delhi court also allowed ED to quiz Geelani’s son-in-law Altaf Shah and others in connection with an alleged funding case.

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