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CWC meet: NC passes 5 resolutions

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Srinagar, Sep 25:National Conference President Farooq Abdullah on Tuesday chaired, for the second consecutive day, a day-long meeting of the Party’s Central Working Committee (CWC) at Party Headquarters ‘Nawa-e-Subah’ in Srinagar.

In the meeting, party Vice President Omar Abdullah, General Secretary Haji Ali Mohammad Sagar, Additional General Secretary Sheikh Mustafa Kamal, Provincial Presidents Nasir Aslam Wani, Devendra Singh Rana and senior leaders including special invitees from all corners of the state were present.

At the end of the two day meeting, CWC of J&K National Conference unanimously passed five resolutions. In the first resolution, National Conference said it stood for the unity, integrity and the special status of Jammu and Kashmir and shall continue to strive to defend its secular character.

 

“We further resolve that National Conference shall continue to work in this direction and vehemently defeat the nefarious designs of the forces who are hell- bent on weakening the secular credentials of the state of Jammu & Kashmir,” the resolution read.

In the second resolution, the party said that calling of the meeting between the foreign ministers of India and Pakistan scheduled for this week in New York City is extremely unfortunate.

National Conference Working Committee unanimously resolved that India and Pakistan must restart a sustained and uninterrupted dialogue process to find a solution to all disputes including  the Kashmir problem.

“We are of the firm opinion that continuation of the dialogue between two countries is the only way available to settle all disputes between two countries and is also in the larger interest of people of the sub-continent.”

The Working Committee, in the third resolution, reiterated its stand and commitment to defend and protect Article 370 and 35A of the Constitution of India.

“The protection and defence of these constitution provisions and restoration of autonomy in J&K is the bedrock of National Conference’s policy and political agenda. This is essential to protect the distinct identity of the state and its people. We believe this is the right time for Government of India to consider the autonomy resolution passed by the state legislature. This will be a serious and meaningful effort by the Government of India to convert the Independence Day commitment of Prime Minister Narendra Modi when he committed that neither bullets nor abuse is the way forward, it is by embracing Kashmiris that the solution to the Kashmir problem will be found,” the party spokesperson said.

In its fourth resolution, the party said that after 2014 there has been a marked and worrisome deterioration in the security scenario across the state. The sanctity of life in the state, whether it is in the number of educated employed youngsters who have taken up arms or the families of police personnel and civilians who are being targeted has been greatly eroded. The root cause of the alienation and anger that has been visible since 2014 is the opportunistic alliance of the PDP with the BJP. It was a betrayal of the mandate of the people who voted in 2014 Assembly elections.

“There is no sense of security on the ground. The way in which excessive use of force and human rights violations are being condoned coupled with mass arrest of youngsters, night raids across the state exposes the tall claims of the state and the central government. In such an atmosphere civilians, police personnel are being targeted in most gruesome ways. Such incidents of violence against families’ of civilians or police personnel are not only worrisome but puts a big question mark over the security apparatus operational in the state.

The Working Committee of J&K National Conference resolves that the central government and the governor administration should immediately take steps to restore a sense of security in the state. A zero tolerance policy for human rights violations must be reiterated and implemented in letter and spirit. The standard operating procedures that have been put in place must also be implemented without any relaxation.

Finally, the Working Committee of J&K National Conference placed on record its deep concern at the sharp rise of the prices of essential commodities especially petrol, diesel, LPG cylinders. Needless to say this price hike is placing an unbearable burden on the people. We appeal to the government to take emergent steps to immediately reverse this trend.

 


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New party in the offing: Faesal wants public money for ‘clean politics’

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Srinagar, Jan 23: Former IAS officer Shah Faesal Wednesday launched a crowd-funding campaign for “clean politics and corruption-free administration” in Jammu and Kashmir hinting towards his plans to float his own political party.

The 2010-batch topper of the UPSC civil services exam said it was a “people’s movement for change”.
“Be a part of this journey for clean politics and corruption-free administration in J&K. Support Shah Faesal with your small donations,” he tweeted.

Faesal, who resigned from government service earlier this month, gave a bank account number for contributions and said payments could also be made through e-wallet.

 

Taking to a social networking site Facebook, Faesal wrote: “I had never imagined that my small act of defiance to highlight political deadlock in Jammu and Kashmir would evoke such a response across the world.”

He added that he had never thought that his “dream of clean politics and corruption-free administration” in J&K would take the shape of a “public movement”. “Respecting the public sentiment, I have decided to chart my independent political journey. And now in this new phase of public service, my mission is to support the true cause of humanity, stand up for the poor, marginalized and dispossessed and speak up for injustices, wherever in this world, irrespective of caste, colour, region, and religion,” he wrote.

Faesal said he imagined a politics where youth can “lead the change and take charge of their future”.“I wish to partner with a new generation of young leaders who can stand up for human rights, environment, free speech and rule of law. My idea is to seek help from the people of India, build alliances with the Indian civil society and intellectual class to humanize the narrative around Kashmir conflict so that lasting peace can be achieved in J&K State.”

He added that his “mission” was to “truthfully represent aspirations, culture, fears, and dreams” of the people of Jammu and Kashmir, across the world.“I wish to facilitate dialogue between people of various regions of the State – Jammu, Kashmir, Ladakh, Pir Panchal, and Chenab Valley so that an environment of amity and brotherhood can be built. I believe that development and dignity must go together, and we have to work together for giving a sense of security, better education, healthcare, livelihoods, electricity and other civic amenities to people of J&K State.”

“This is a people’s movement and it will be funded by the people. People are the only agencies who will help this succeed. Believe in me, be patient with me in this long and difficult journey and donate for this cause,” he wrote.

Earlier Faesal had resigned dubbing it as protest against “unabated killings in Kashmir, and lack of any sincere reach-out from the Union government; the marginalisation and invisiblisation of around 200 million Indian Muslims at the hands of Hindutva forces reducing them to second-class citizens; insidious attacks on the special identity of J&K and growing culture of intolerance and hate in mainland India in the name of hypernationalism”.
While he has made it clear that he would like to contest the upcoming Lok Sabha elections, Faesal has not joined any political party so far. Speculation is rife that he might float a new political outfit.

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Priyanka Gandhi debuts in active politics: Mehbooba dubs her ‘X factor of 2019 polls’

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New Delhi, Jan 23: Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, the sister of Congress president Rahul Gandhi, has finally taken the plunge into politics, just months ahead of the national election due by May.
Often dubbed the “Brahmastra” or the mythical ultimate weapon of the Congress, Priyanka will debut as the party’s general secretary in charge of the eastern part of Uttar Pradesh, which pitches her against the ruling BJP’s top two mascots, Prime Minister Narendra Modi–whose constituency Varanasi will be in her share–and Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath.
“I have not sent Priyanka and Jyotiraditya for just two months. I have sent them to take the Congress’ ideology forward in Uttar Pradesh,” Rahul Gandhi told reporters.
Among many noted personalities congratulating Priyanka was former J&K Chief Minister, Mehbooba Mufti, who tweeted: “Welcome Priyanka Gandhi to the rough and tumble of politics. She brings with her the grace of Gandhi Nehru lineage and her immense personal charm. Wish her the best. Could she become the Xfactor of 2019 poll battle?”
47-year-old Priyanka, who reminds many of her grandmother and former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, for both her charisma and the stunning likeness, is seen as a natural in politics but she has confined herself to the constituencies of her brother Rahul and mother Sonia Gandhi–Amethi and Raebareli–till now.
In national and state elections since 2004, the mother-of-two has campaigned exhaustively in the family seats where the Gandhis enjoy almost royal status.
Reports say her appointment to a key position reflects the Congress’s realisation that in a politically vital state like Uttar Pradesh, which has 80 parliamentary seats and is considered the route to power at the centre, the party needs to up its game and cannot afford just one in-charge. It is a huge gamble for the Congress, a sign that the party is all for aggressively taking on PM Modi and the BJP in the coming election.
The Congress dropped the Priyanka bombshell in the third para of a press statement that also announced that Jyotiraditya Scindia will be in charge of western UP. The giant announcement came as Rahul Gandhi began a two-day visit to Amethi. Priyanka Gandhi is in New York and is expected to return on February 1.
Congress leaders say Priyanka Gandhi’s arrival in party politics will galvanise the ranks that have been demoralised by the Mayawati-Akhilesh Yadav move to form an alliance in UP for the national election without the Congress, which has been pitching for a grand opposition alliance to take on the BJP.
Rahul Gandhi commented that the BJP was “panicking”.
The ruling party has been repeatedly targeting Priyanka Gandhi’s husband Robert Vadra, a businessman being investigated for allegedly corrupt land deals in Haryana and Rajasthan. Robert Vadra congratulated his wife in a Facebook post: “Congratulations P… always by your side in every phase of your life.”
In national and state elections since 2004, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra has campaigned in the family seats where the Gandhis enjoy almost royal status.
Priyanka Gandhi was always active in decision-making and played a key role in the alliance with Akhilesh Yadav’s Samajwadi Party in the 2017 Uttar Pradesh election. She also reportedly oversaw the party meeting in which her older brother was crowned Congress president.
The BJP shrugged off the Congress announcement. “Rahul Gandhi failed so they need Priyanka as a crutch. Can’t they find anyone beyond that family?” sneered BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra.

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Srinagar-Jammu Highway still closed

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Jammu, Jan 23: A massive snow-clearance operation was underway to restore the 270-km Jammu-Srinagar Highway which remained closed for vehicular traffic for the third consecutive day Wednesday, officials said.
The snow clearance operation on both sides of the Jawahar Tunnel–the gateway to Kashmir–was started and the snow-clearance operation is going on in full swing, said Deputy Superintendent of Police, Traffic Highway, Pardeep Singh Sen.
An avalanche had also struck the Jawahar Tunnel area on Tuesday, blocking both tubes on Qazigund side.
The Border Roads Organisation (BRO), which maintains the Jawahar tunnel stretch of the highway, pressed its men and machines to clear the road of the accumulated snow on Tuesday, Sen said.
“We are expecting the highway to be open for traffic by late afternoon. However, only the stranded vehicles will be allowed to move on the highway once we get the green signal,” he said.
Hundreds of vehicles, mostly trucks, are stranded at various places along the highway, the only all-weather road linking Kashmir with rest of the country, officials said.
They said the road from Banihal, which recorded over two and a half feet of snow, to Jawahar tunnel was also being cleared, while the Banihal-Ramban stretch is almost clear after agencies concerned removed minor landslides and stones which came down at different places due to incessant rains.
After three-day long wet spell across Kashmir, the weather showed improvement with local meteorological department forecasting dry weather till January 29.
The three-day-long wet spell ended across the Valley today. The MeT department had predicted improvement in the weather conditions from Tuesday evening.
The local Meteorological department said that there is no forecast of rain or snowfall across the Valley till January 29 here, saying that the weather would remain cloudy on Jan 25.

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