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Govt brings in app to prevent forest fires

Hirra Azmat

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Srinagar, Nov 22: Jammu and Kashmir Forest Department has come up with a distinctive mobile application to prevent forest fires.
Forest fires in the state, particularly in the valley, have become frequent, especially during winters, causing damage to the habitation of rare wild animals and priceless flora.
This year, dozens of forest fire incidents were reported in Kashmir, more often in Srinagar’s Zabarwan mountain range where more than 60 hectares of the green area was damaged.
Officials sources at the forest department claim that they can now track and instantly attend to forest fire incidents using the “real-time satellite images captured by the application”.
“Internet connectivity is not compulsory for this mobile app. One can report the information of forest fire and upload it on server later on when he/she can have Internet/WiFi connectivity. If Internet connectivity is available at the moment the data will directly upload onto the server,” they said.
While substantiating the official claims, document prepared by the Forest Department said, “Saved Records contains the record of observations collected by field staff which can’t be uploaded on the server due to the network issues or any technical issues. So, one can select the observations from the list and upload it on server when internet connectivity will be available.”
“In case of fire incidence, the frontline staff or any other person present at the spot can simply report the fire by turning on mobile location and it will automatically capture the geo-coordinates of location via satellite,” it said.
“The real time reporting helps to quickly disseminate information from the field staff to control room so that timely action can be taken to gain quick control over the fire” the documents read.
The information registered through the mobile application, as per the documents, will be stored for each forest division and serve as a “database”.
“The coordinates later help in identifying the locations where fire breaks out.  Accordingly,  the department starts working on that affected area and plan the interventions required so that such incidents don’t occur in future,” it said.
The application called Forest Fire Alert Mobile Application is developed by the Indian Institute of remote sensing/ forest fire reporting (IIRS/FFR).  Three fire related incidents have been reported from the time the application was launched.
Environmentalist, Dr Arshid said “The application is an effective tool for enhancing the surveillance over the vulnerable areas. What the department can do is to improve and maintain the fire line within protected forest areas, so that fires do not spread fast.”


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Kashmir

Yasin Malik’s detention: SHRC issues notice to CS, Home Sec, DGP

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Srinagar, April 24: State Human Rights commission on Wednesday issued to notice Chief Secretary J&K, Commissioner Secretary Home department and DGP police asking to submit the detailed compliance report regarding detention and shifting of Muhammad Yasin Malik to NIA custody.

According to the KNO correspondent the petitioner, Ahsan Untoo, had pleaded before the SHRC that Malik is a political worker and was detained under Public Safety Act and later handed over to National Investigation Agency, calling it ‘illegal’. The notice to government officials was issued by State Human Rights commission chairperson Rtd justice Bilal Nazki.

“The authorities illegally allowed the police authorities to change the custody which is otherwise illegal in nature and handed over custody to NIA,” Untoo had pleaded before the commission. It was reported health conditions got deteriorated with unknown reasons and the family members; friends were not allowed to interact or to get the health information of Malik.

 

Untoo in his petitions said that when Malik’s lawyer met him on April 20, at RML Hospital, he was not able to have a conversation with the lawyer as he was ruthlessly beaten by the NIA authorities, he was rushed to the RML hospital in a very critical condition and since then no one has been allowed to interact with Malik.

“It creates apprehensions in the mind of family members and the general public of the valley that he might have been assassinated by the authorities and in this regard no communication has been made by the concerned authorities regarding the same,” he said in his petition.

Untoo had also pleaded before SHRC that a team be constituted who will receive a firsthand information regarding the wellbeing of Malik, and he be brought before the media so as the apprehensions regarding the assassination of Malik are put to rest.(KNO)

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Kashmir

Vehicle carrying perishable food items be exempted from NH ban: Faesal

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Srinagar, Apr 24: Calling upon the government to at least , exempt vehicles carrying perishable items, vegetables, fruits, poultry and livestock from National Highway Traffic ban, President J&K Peoples Movement, Dr. Shah Faesal Wednesday said that the ban is harming small traders the most.

In a statement issued, Dr. Faesal said that restrictions on the movement of vehicles carrying perishable items has put traders to huge loss adding that administration seems to be in deep slumber to pay heed to the pleas of affected people.

“I got a call last night that a vehicle carrying livestock has been stuck on the highway for last two days. There is shortage of fodder and the animals are about to die due to hunger”, Shah Faesal added.

 

He said that not only human beings but even animals are also suffering due to the highway ban. He has forcibly demanded to revoke the draconian measure immediately.

He said ban on movement of civilian traffic on the Jammu-Srinagar National Highway is totally undemocratic and anti-people which is causing huge inconvenience to all sections of the society including small and marginal traders.

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Kashmir

Rawalpora youth’s death: CCTV shows Umar falling down on a roadside: Police

Syed Nashir Ali Gillani

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Srinagar, Apr 24: Police on Wednesday said that questioning was on to ascertain the facts behind the mysterious death of a youth, Umar Bhat of Rawalpora’s Astanpora area.

Umar in his late 20s was found dead on Sunday after he left his home in the morning to attend a function at Tagore hall.

Station House Officer (SHO), Shergari Police station, Aftab Ahmad told The Kashmir Monitor that they were waiting for the postmortem report.

 

He said the CCTV footage available with the Police shows Umar falling on the road near Oxford school, Wanabal.

“It appears that he was under the influence of drugs, it is only an assumption. Only after postmortem report, we would be able to speak on the cause of death,” Aftab maintained.

He said they have recorded the statements of around 4-5 persons in connection with the case.

“His friends, including the one who accompanied him to Star Hospital (in Sanat Nagar), where he was initially brought for treatment, are being questioned,” he said.

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