Srinagar, Apr 23: The government decision to shut coaching centres hardly had any impact on the ongoing wave of student protests as several schools and colleges of the valley Monday witnessed massive protests in favour of the eight year old girl raped and murdered in Kathua in January.
In south, Government Boys Degree college Anantnag became the epicentre of clashes and protests when students and policemen engaged in pitched battles within the college campus.
Dozens of tear gas shells and stun grenades were lobbed in the campus even as hundreds of students kept on pelting stones at the forces initially were outside the college gate.
Students kept on pelting stones forcing the police and paramilitary to enter into the college premises and lathicharging the protesting students.
A student and a staff member received injuries during the clashes, however their condition was stable as per the college sources.
In the north of the valley, students of Jamia Kadeem High School Sopore took out a protest march against the rape and murder of Kathua minor.
Reports said that protesting students assembled near Jamia Kadeem shouting anti-governmental slogans and marched towards Bus stand demanding punishment for the accused.
Local said that as soon as students reached near Bus Stand Sopore, the deployed forces did not allow them to move ahead, ensuing in clashes.
However, the situation soon turned normal after the forces dispersed the protesting students.
In Pampore, the students of Government Degree College staged a strong protest demonstration and raised slogans against the culprits of the Kathua rape and murder took out a protest rally in the saffron town.
Reports said that students including girl students of Government of Government Degree College Pampore staged a strong protest at Khrew Chowk.
Later, the students dispersed peacefully after college management reached the spot.
The Students of Government Boys Higher Secondary School Kangan of central Kashmir Ganderbal district too held a peaceful protest at main Market Kangan to demand justice for the eight-year-old Kathua girl who was raped and murdered.
The students marched from the school to the main Market Kangan and staged for some time without disturbing traffic movement in the area.
The students were demanding strict action against the culprits involving in the Kathua rape and murder case.
“We want an exemplary punishment to the culprits so that no one in future dares to commit such a heinous crime,” said the protesting students.
Four policemen among ten students injured in Ganderbal Clashes which broke on Monday after students of Degree College Ganderbal boycotted their classes and staged a protest march outside the college premises against the Kathua rape and murder of an 8-year-old girl.
Sources said amid pro-freedom and anti-India sloganeering the students came out of the college gate and blocked Ganderbal-Shalbugh road outside the college.
They said that government forces foiled the students protest triggering clashes in the area.
Protesting students pelted stones on the government forces who retaliated with counter stones pelting resulting the injuries of four policemen including ten students.
The protesting students were demanding justice for eight-year-old girl and punishment for culprits.
The students of the Govt High School Malpora Saderkoot area of north Kashmir’s Bandipora district on Monday staged a massive protest demanding justice for eight-year-old Kathua rape and murder victim.
Reports said that the protesting students were seen holding placards in their hands, depicting different messages calling for justice in the case of Kathua rape and murder case.
The protesting students said that aim of holding the protest was to draw attention towards the violence against women all over the world.
Meanwhile, Students of Govt Girls High School Ajas in the same district also took out a protest march in solidarity with Kathua victim.
Raising different slogans, the protesting students demanded stern punishment to culprits to the extent that in future no one dares to do such a shameful act.
Reports said that Students of Jamia Qadeem Sopore also took out a protest march from Iqbal Market toward General Bus Stand Sopore.
Witness said the Students took out a protest march raising slogans against the rapists.
They demanded that the culprits of the heinous crime be hanged till death besides demanded a fair investigation into the case.
However later in the area minor clashes reported between protesting students and forces.
Meanwhile a protest rally also took out at Palhallan area of Baramulla district by Higher Secondary students and demanded strict action against accused and justice for 08 year Kautha minor girl.
Students peaceful protest rally also held in north Kashmir’s Hajin.
Eye witnesses said that scores of students at Hajin Schools staged a massive protest rally in the area against Kathua girl, shouted slogans against BJP and demanded strict action against accused.
Students at Baramulla too protested against Kathua rape and murder case of little girl.
Reports said students at Boys Higher Secondary School Baramulla tried to come out on roads and shouted slogans in solidarity with the eight-year-old nomadic girl, however forces deployed in the area stopped then resulted in clashes in the area.
Kashmir receives fresh snowfall, aerial traffic affected
By Tabish Shafi
Srinagar, Jan 17: Kashmir on Wednesday received fresh snowfall affecting the aerial traffic and bringing life to halt.
The fresh snowfall in this morning across the Valley disrupted the normal life in Kashmir with surface traffic remaining suspended for a day while as the Srinagar-Jammu highway remained open despite the snowfall.
Authorities in Srinagar Airport said that the flights to and from Srinagar were suspended in view of the prevailing weather conditions as well as the poor visibility.
Officials said that flights will be operational once the weather conditions and visibility will improve.”Due to bad weather/ heavy snowfall, all flights have been cancelled”.
Meanwhile, the 300-km long Srinagar-Jammu highway was open for one-way traffic as there was little or no snowfall in south Kashmir parts on Wednesday.
“Road Status: #Srinagar-Jammu highway open, Traffic plying from Srinagar to #Jammu; Srinagar-Kargil road Closed; Anantnag-Kishtwar road Closed; Mughal Road closed; Bandipora-Gurez road closed; Kupwara-Karnah, Kupwara-Keran, Kupwara-Machail roads closed. @JmuKmrPolice,” Police tweeted.
Director of Meteorological department (MeT), Sonum Lotus said that the light rains as well as snowfall were predicted by the department earlier. “The reports of moderate snowfall were received from some places in Kashmir today,” he said.
He added that the weather would remain mostly cloudy in Kashmir from Jan 18-19, saying that from Jan 19 evening onwards; there is possibility of light rains and snowfall at isolate places.
Lotus further added that the MeT has predicted highly dynamic weather till Jan 23 in Kashmir. “From Jan 20-23, there is possibility of moderate rains and snowfall across the Valley,” he said, adding that the surface as well as the road traffic would also get affected due to the snow spell.
Meanwhile, the state administration claimed to have adequate measures to ensure basic facilities and road clearance during and in the aftermath of fresh snowfall.
The top officials held a series of meetings so far to finalize arrangements in this regard.
The respective district administrations have also asked the officials to gear up for the fresh snow spell as predicted by the Meteorological department
Meanwhile, the day temperatures across the Kashmir Valley nosedived amid fresh snowfall.
A meteorological department official told that Srinagar recorded a maximum of 1.0 degree Celsius, more than six degrees below normal for this time of the year. The capital city saw 5.4 mm of snow (when converted into rain) from 0830 to 1730 hours.
The famous hill resort of Pahalgam recorded a maximum of minus 1.6 degree Celsius and saw snowfall of 8.5mm.
Qazginund, the gateway town of Kashmir, saw a maximum of 2.2 degrees Celsius while Kokernag, also in south Kashmir, recorded a maximum of 1.1 degrees Celsius. Both these places saw zero or traces of snowfall.
The MeT official said the famous ski-resort of Gulmarg in north Kashmir saw a maximum of minus 2.4 degrees Celsius and it had a snowfall of 15.2 mm during the day.
Kupwara town in north Kashmir registered a maximum of 0.8 degrees Celsius, the official said.
JK showcases tourism potential at Asia’s largest travel show
NEW DELHI, JANUARY 16: Launching its aggressive marketing campaign, the Department of Tourism, participated in the 3-day South Asian Travel and Tourism Exhibition (SATTE) travel show which began here on Wednesday.
SATTE is one of the biggest travel shows in Asia providing platform for travel agents, tour operators, hoteliers, destination management companies, tourism boards to sell their products and network to their potential clients from across the globe.
Besides, J&K Tourism Department, over hundred travel agents, hoteliers, other service providers and heads of the various travel and hotel associations from the Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh regions are participating in the travel show to showcase the State’s tourism potential.
Secretary Tourism, Rigzin Samphel, Director Tourism Kashmir Nisar Ahmad Wani and Director Tourism Jammu Om Prakash Bhagat along with other senior officers from the Department participated in the travel show.
They had an interaction with the leading travel agents from within and outside the country and apprised them about the State’s tourism products.
“SATTE is one of the largest tourism shows in Asia where we can promote our tourism destinations. The department will provide all the information about the JK’s destinations, products, services to the visitors to attract them to the state,” the Secretary Tourism said.
Over 20000 visitors, including domestic and international sellers and buyers, State tourism officials, heads of international tourism boards, hoteliers, and aviation experts showcased their products and services to the global trade community.
The travel show also provides an opportunity for the state tourism department to conduct business sessions with the visitors during the travel show.
On the first day, the Tourism Department of at its pavilion screened short films on different destinations for the visitors who were mesmerized to see the stunning beauty. It also showcased State’s splendid art, craft and sumptuous traditional food.
A large number of visitors turned up at J&K pavilion to inquire about the State’s tourism products, new destinations and infrastructure development.
The Department informed them about the pilgrim, MICE, heritage, art and craft, food, known and lesser-known destinations of all the three regions of the state.
The Department also distributed comprehensive publicity material in the form of brochures and pamphlets, pen drives containing travel videos of different destinations to the visitors at its pavilion.
During the convention, Secretary Tourism, Director Tourism Kashmir, Director Tourism Jammu along with heads of local travel and hospitality sector will also hold separate meet with media to apprise them about the Kashmir being the safe tourist destination.
The Director Tourism Kashmir said the department has planned series of road shows and shall also participate in travel marts in the next two months.
“We will be visiting major cities in the country for road shows. We have also planned road shows in countries like Malaysia, Thailand and Bangladesh where from we have got a good response from the travellers,” he said.
All election formalities to be completed by Feb end: Sources
Srinagar, Jan 16 : All election formalities in Jammu and Kashmir are likely to be completed by February end after which the Election Commission of India will take a final call on the dates for the conduct of Lok Sabha and Assembly elections simultaneously.
Top sources while disclosing this to Kashmir News Service (KNS) revealed that the Jammu and Kashmir government has fast paced the process of completing election formalities for both Lok Sabha and Assembly elections by February end and the final electoral roles are likely to be published anytime after January 20.
As already reported the Jammu and Kashmir Chief Electoral Officer Shailendra Kumar held video conference on finalization of electoral roles and other election related arrangements with all the district election officers (DEOs) of all the three regions of the state Tuesday this week.
Sources said the authorities in the election commission will work on the suitability of the location of polling booths across Jammu and Kashmir after January 20 and the process is likely to be completed by February 15.
The Election Commission of India, sources said, is likely to take a final call on the dates for the conduct of Lok Sabha and Assembly elections simultaneously earliest by February end and latest by March 15 and the polling in Jammu and Kashmir is likely to be held in the month of April only.
The polling, sources said, is likely to be held in eight phases adding that the polls in south Kashmir however may be held exclusively on the day when polls in no other part of the state will be held keeping in view the volatile situation in four districts of south Kashmir.