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Governor launches ‘Swachhata Hi Seva’: J&K declared ODF; 1.1 million toilets constructed in 4- years

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Srinagar, Sep 15: Governor, Satya Pal Malik launched the “Swachhata Hi Seva (SHS)” Programme for J&K, a fortnight long program (till 2nd October) for public awareness and involvement of community, in a function held at the Sher-i-Kashmir International Conference Centre. On this occasion the State was self declared Open Defecation Free (ODF) by the Governor.
Governor congratulated the State Administration for their efforts in making the State 100% Open Defecation Free. He observed that due to sustained efforts of all stakeholders, Jammu and Kashmir has achieved 100 per cent toilet coverage and has become Open Defecation Free (ODF), one year in advance. All the 22 districts, 4,171 Gram Panchayats and 7,565 villages in the state are self- declared ODF as per Swachh Bharat Mission (Grameen) SBM (G) guidelines.
Governor observed that apart from constructing 1.1 million Individual Household Toilets (IHHLs) and 1350 Community Sanitary Complexes in the state, Swachh bharat Abhiyan has played a vital role in bringing about behavioural change in the people.
Governor emphasised the high importance of cleanliness in ensuring over all well being of our family and community and expressed concern for the women folk who suffer from health ailments due to lack of toilet facilities at our homes. He observed that cleanliness generates a positive frame of mind which is crucial for making us lead a purposeful life. He cited example of Mahatma Gandhi who had a rule in his ‘ashram’ for self cleaning of toilets and noted that all religions and philosophies of the world have emphasised importance of cleanliness and hygiene for the overall health of individuals and societies.
Governor noted that contribution of common people is the main driving force behind achieving such remarkable targets. He hoped that people like Sonam Wangchuk, an education reformist, Cricketer Manzoor Dar, and Singer Sonali Dogra, who are associated with this movement as its Barnd Ambassadors will inspire people to contribute towards making our State clean.
Reiterating his resolve for ensuring all round development of the State, Governor observed that one of the priorities of the Governor’s Administration would be ensuring cleanliness of all the water bodies and lakes, cities, towns and villages of the State and formulating a sustainable solid and liquid waste disposal programme. He noted that his Administration will ensure uninterrupted supply of electricity during festivals and examinations.
Governor expressed his concern over non-availability of avenues to youth for pursuing their hobbies and showcasing their talents. He observed that he is working with IPL Chairman Rajiv Shukla on the idea of having an IPL team for J&K and noted that very soon IPL matches will be played in J&K. He also reiterated his commitment for strengthening sports infrastructure in the State with construction of Stadiums in all districts having state of the art facilities.
Governor remarked that the Raj Bhavan is open to everyone whosoever wishes to register his grievances.
Governor released a book on State ODF Declaration- “The Journey – The Milestone”. SBM-G Scheme Anthem sung by Ms. Sonali Dogra was also released on the occasion.
The Deputy Commissioners and District Panchayat Officers of all the districts were felicitated on the occasion.
Sh. Durga Shankar Mishra, Union Secretary Housing and Urban Affairs, Sh. B.B. Vyas, Sh. Khurshid Ahmad Ganai- Advisors to Governor, Sh. BVR Subrahmanyam, Chief Secretary, lauded the efforts of the Rural Development Department in achieving the target making the State OFD well before the given timelines.
Ms. Sheetal Nanda, Secretary Rural Development Department presented an overview of SBM-G Scheme and ODF Declaration process. Ms. Indu Kanwal Chib, Mission Director SBM-G, J&K presented a brief about the SHS.
Senior Officers, Officers of Rural Development Department, District Development Commissioners, District Panchayat Officers, Zila Swachh Bharat Preraks, members of UMEED-self help group and RDD field functionaries were present on the occasion.


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Kashmir

Media blitz calls for payback, masks voices calling for peace

Hirra Azmat

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Srinagar, Feb 15: The suicide bombing attack that claimed the lives of 49 CRPF men in south Kashmir has evoked completely opposite reactions on social media in Kashmir and other states of India.
On Thursday, a deadly attack took place at Lethpora area in south Kashmir’s Pulwama district when a suicide bomber rammed his explosive-laden car into a CRPF convoy.
While Kashmiri voices have called for political solution to the valley, the Indian politicians, intellectuals, TV news channels and a section of media personnel are predictably demanding an eye for an eye solution.
For instance, channels like leading National news channels like Republic and Times Now have openly incited hate by calling for revenge running the hashtags #Indiawantsrevenge and #Indiaseeksjustice.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted, “Our neighbouring nation that stands isolated in international community today… if they think that they will succeed in attacking India’s stability by committing such dastardly acts, they are wrong, India will emerge stronger.”
Union Minister Arun Jaitley said in a statement, “Most Favoured Nation status to Pak stands withdrawn. MEA will engage with international community to ensure that convention on international terrorism is adopted. Security forces will ensure those responsible for this heinous attack pay a heavy price.”
Senior Associate Editor Republic, Aditya Raj Koul tweeted, “Strong words from PM Narendra Modi on Pulwama terror attack: Terrorists will pay a heavy price for this dastardly act. Pak designs won’t succeed, our neighboring country should realise that it can’t create instability in India with such conspiracies. Free hand to forces.”
Vir Sanghvi, Journalist and TV anchor posted on Twitter, “India must respond. Pakistan can’t be allowed to get away with these attacks. I am sure that there will be a strong military response within the next week. And no matter which party we back, all Indians must unite against Pakistan and the terrorists it feeds, shelters & arms.”
Meanwhile, the prominent Kashmiri voices, intellectuals spoke of for the resolution of the conflict that leads to such incidents. Politicians across the spectrum condemned the attack and called for “sustained dialogue”.
Former Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti posted on twitter, “No mainstream pol in J&K will condone terrorism. Dangerous how certain channels are trying to create an alternate reality. They churn lies, hatred and a divisive agenda, I have ventured sans security into the areas no man in the 90’s would step into. So plz wake up and smell the coffee.”
Noted Journalist, Gowhar Geelani tweeted, “Politicians in Delhi and Islamabad need to move beyond rhetoric and revenge politics and acknowledge and respect the political aspirations of Kashmiri people for a peaceful resolution of the Kashmir dispute. Violence and counter violence will not solve anything.”
Social rights activist and doctor at SMHS, Khawar Khan Achakzai tweeted, “The only way is accepting that Kashmir is a politically disputed territory, respecting the aspirations of people of J&K, engaging in talks and chalking out a road map for de-militarisation.”

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Kashmir

Lethpora attack leaves security agencies shocked, guessing

Kashmir News Service

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Srinagar, Feb 15: On a wintry February 14 afternoon, a CRPF convoy moving on Srinagar-Jammu Highway reached Awantipora town in southern Kashmir, a suicide (Fidayeen) car bomber blew up himself by ramming into the two CRPF buses leaving around 49 dead and dozens others injured critically.
Soon after the incident militant outfit Jaish-e-Mohammad claimed the responsibility and identified the car bomber a local youth of Pulwama, who had joined the outfit last year.
Like earlier attacks on forces, this brutal attack has left the security establishment shocked and guessing. The J&K governor admitted the mistake and termed it a major “security lapse and intelligence failure”.
“We are working out on the things about the loopholes that took a massive toll on forces. Where did we fail in protecting forces while they travel in convoys on the highway?” said a top officer in J&K police dealing with security wing.
Militants carry out their assaults despite deployment of CRPF, police and Army on the connecting points on the highway.
However, the attack on the government forces on Srinagar-Jammu highway is not the first, but this one is the most deadly in the last three decades ever since armed militancy broke out in Kashmir.
The security agencies and the NIA team investigating the attack have raised some key points as to why the attack yet again took place between Pampore and Awantipora stretch of the highway.
Two years ago, in June, militants daringly stopped CRPF bus on the same highway in the Pampore town, few miles away from this blast site, and rained it with bullets from different directions, killing eight CRPF men and injuring 22 others.
Earlier, three militants suddenly appeared on the highway near EDI building, fired on a CRPF bus, wounding 11 personnel and then rushed into the EDI building.
The frequent attacks on the highway are a reminder of deadly attacks on forces carried out by militants in the conflict-torn Kashmir after the insurgency began in 1987.
In 2014, two days before August 15-India’s Independence Day, militants again attacked a police party resulting in killing of two security guards of a police official and a civilian.
In the same year, hours before Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s second visit to J&K, militants ambushed BSF convoy at Kadlabal in Pampore town leaving eight men including assistant commandant seriously injured.
In July 2012, militants attacked Convoy Protection Force Party of army from a close range killing a soldier and injuring another one seriously.
Almost 10 years ago, in Dec 2006, militants attacked a police party in Kadlibal and killed SHO Manzoor Ahmed and injured his two security guards. A civilian was also killed in the attack.
Officials in police and other counterinsurgency said that militants have many reasons to choose this 20 kilometer stretch for their assaults. “One of the reasons is that the Highway along the Pampore town has a number of link roads connecting on it with internal areas. Two, the Highway sneaks along the Jhelum River,” they said.

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Kashmir

Adv Ganai visits Srinagar Base Hospital, enquires about injured CRPF personnel

The Kashmir Monitor

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Srinagar, Feb 15: Advisor to the Governor, Khurshid Ahmed Ganai, Friday visited the Army’s 92-Base Hospital here to enquire about the CRPF personnel who were injured in Thursday’s attack at Lethpora in Pulwama.He prayed for speedy recovery of the injured troopers undergoing treatment at the Hospital.
Later, the Advisor visited the CRPF Centre, Humhama where he laid wreath over the mortal remains of those who were slain in the attack. Condemning the attack, he conveyed his heart-felt condolences to the bereaved families who lost their dear ones.

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