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Editors, Journalists Associations meet PCI team in Srinagar

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Srinagar, July 4: The three-member Press Council of India (PCI) team held a series of meetings here on Wednesday with the representatives of various media associations to have an insight into the challenges confronting the media in the State.
The PCI team comprising of Pravat Kumar Dash, Ashok Upadhyay and Prof Sushma Yadav, held detailed deliberations with the representatives of Kashmir Editors Guild (KEG), Kashmir Press Club, Jammu &Kashmir Editors Forum (JKEF), Jammu and Kashmir Press Association (JKPA), J&K Media Association, J&K Journalistic Union and other similar bodies.
During the meetings, the associations urged PCI to play a proactive role in addressing the issues and challenges faced by the newspapers and journalists here.
They demanded that there should be a set-time frame within which the petitions filed in the Council by the newspapers regarding various issues are addressed.
Lack of J&K’s representation in PCI was also discussed during the meetings. It was said that it is high time when J&K should get representation in the Council, as it will expedite redressal of the cases brought into the notice of the Council from the State.
The visiting Council members acknowledged that there has been some communication gap between local journalists and the Council and every possible step would be taken to fill the void at an earliest. They assured that they would be in regular touch with the media fraternity in the State to ensure speedy redressal of their grievances.
The team said that they were visiting the State on the instructions of Chairman PCI Justice C K Prasad who according to them was concerned over the recent developments in the State.

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High Court Bar demands inquiry into death of Kashmiri inmate

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Srinagar, July 18: Jammu Kashmir High Court Bar Association Srinagar Wednesday expressed grave concern over the death of 70 year old Ghulam Hassan Malik alias Noor Khan, who, died in custody on Tuesday, at Government Medical Hospital, Jammu.

Khan died a day after he was shifted to Hospital from Kotbalwal Jail, where he was lodged on January 17 this year in pursuance of an order of detention passed against him by District Magistrate.

The Bar Association, in a press statement, demanded that an inquiry should be held in the matter to ascertain as to how and under what circumstances the death of deceased took place in the hospital and as to whether the provisions of Detenue General Order 1968, were observed by the jail authorities in the case or not.

The Bar Association maintained that when a detenue falls ill in jail, he has to be removed to the nearest hospital immediately, having the necessary facilities and equipment and detained there in custody until the termination of treatment and the Superintendent of the Jail has to send the information to the Government as well as to the Controller of Prisons.

“He (the Controlled of Prisons) is also duty bound to keep the Government promptly informed about the progress of the detenue and in case it is not so done, then the guilty are to be prosecuted for medical negligence resulting in the death of the prisoner and punished according to law,” the Bar said.

It also condemned the barging into the houses and assaulting the people and damaging their property without any provocation by the army soldiers on Tuesday night at Mashward village of Shopian District, who have approached the police and have urged for the lodging of an FIR against the soldiers, who according to them are habitual of barging into the houses and terrorizing people.

“It has been stated in the FIR that on Tuesday night the Army soldiers barged into their houses and besides assaulting the people and thrashing over a dozen of them who sustained injuries and were hospitalized, the army people also damaged cars and bikes in the village and even the headman of the village was not spared. A youth had dared to ask the army personnel to stop breaking the law but they pounced upon him and hit him with gun buts and jackboots which frightened the other youth and had to rush for safety in the dead of the night.”

The Bar Association as per the statement also termed the grant of 30 days judicial custody and shifting of Asiya Andrabi, Nahida Nasreen and Fahmeeda Sofi to Mandaveli Jail, as unwarranted and unjustified as all the three had been taken from Central Jail Srinagar, where they were lodged in Judicial Custody, under the orders of a competent court at Anantnag, to Delhi and produced before NIA Court, who first handed them over to NIA custody and thereafter to judicial custody, without considering the circumstances under which been brought to Delhi and were no more needed to be detained in the police custody.

“The court ought to have taken the aforesaid aspects of the matter into account more particularly the one that the three were ladies and under the Code of Criminal Procedure were entitled to bail as a matter of right as such should have been released on bail or else shifted back to Central Jail, Srinagar, where they were previously lodged under a proper court order,” reads the statement issued by High Court Bar Association.

Meanwhile, in a condolence meeting held today, in High Court premises, the Bar members expressed their grief over the sad demise of the youngest sister of Senior Advocate Z. A. Shah, who breathed her last yesterday in a hospital at Srinagar.

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Need to foil plans of people trying to weaken PDP: Mehbooba

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Srinagar, July 18: Stressing upon the need to strengthen the party at grass root level PDP President Mehbooba Mufti has said that PDP owes its emergence to avowed objectives of peace and reconciliation and it cannot commit a sin to defeat the mission of its patron or undermine the sacrifices of its people and party workers by compromising on the basic agenda.

Mehbooba was addressing a meeting of senior leaders and workers of South Kashmir at Srinagar on Wednesday. Senior Party functionaries, legislators, and party workers also participated in the meeting.

Mehbooba said that it is time to strengthen the party “which has emerged as a pedestal of hope for the people of the state, yearning to see an end of chaos and bloodshed”.

“There is a dire need that everyone has to put earnest and sincere efforts to strengthen the party and make it a more vibrant force that can fight for the peoples’ rights with an impeccable will and remain in the forefront to end their predicament.”

“The need is to foil the vicious designs of the vested interests who are hell-bent to weaken the PDP and added that it has now been dawned upon all across the political spectrum of the country and the state as well that PDP shall never barter the peoples aspirations for power and that the party has been in the forefront ever since its inception, pitching for peace, tranquility and a dignified life for the people of Jammu and Kashmir at large,” Mehbooba said.

“The party founder Mufti Mohammad Sayeed deserted all his comforts and decided to trek the perilous path with a sole reason to get his strife-torn people out of the uncertain times and strengthen their beliefs in the institutions of justice,” she said.

“Speaking on this occasion the other party leaders  provided valuable suggestion to outreach to the people  in order to further strengthen the party and also asserted that they stand by the decisions of party leadership and assured  full support to party president Mehbooba Mufti  in good as well as bad times and said that they stand by the ideology and agenda of the party envisaged by late Mufti Mohammad Sayeed who floated this party to mitigate the sufferings of people of the state,” said PDP party spokesman in a statement.

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Pampore-Manigam road: Land owners protest for higher compensation

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Srinagar: The farmers providing land for Pampore-Manigam semi-ring road on Wednesday demanded a higher compensation.

Staging a protest here, the farmers from parts of the valley threatened to shift to their fields if their demand was not met.

They said their land was their only source of income.

“We would shift to our fields if we do not get adequate compensation. The Land Acquisition Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act 2013, implemented in other parts of the country, shall be extended to Kashmir to ensure fair compensation,” said Abdul Rashid, a protesting land owner from Chadoora, Budgam.

Issaq Dar of Pampore added: “The rates offered to us are too low. We have been earning our livelihood from agriculture. If we do not get enough compensation, we will be pushed to the wall.”

The protesters said they fail to understand as to why the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) was not paying “an adequate compensation” to them.

“The farmers in other parts of the country are getting reasonable compensation. If they can, why cannot we. Our land is being occupied forcibly. NHAI is not ready for private negotiation, a provision in J&K Land Acquisition Rules,” a protester said.

The 60-km road is coming up as an alternate road link between Pampore in south to Manigam in central Kashmir’s Ganderbal district, crossing through Budgam.

 

 

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