Srinagar, Feb 25: With the hearing on the constitutional validity of Article 35A at the Supreme Court likely this week, Senior Congress leader and former union minister Prof Saifuddin Soz on Monday said that Kashmir’s relation with the union will be severed if Article 370 is repelled.
Soz said that if Article 370 is tampered, he will unite with former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, National Conference leader Omar Abdullah and separatist leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani in ordrer to protest at Kashmir’s Lal Chowk.
“It is not known why this strong military force has been deployed in the valley of Kashmir. Locals of Kashmir get shocked seeing military forces around them. And if Article 370 is repelled by the court, Kashmir’s relation with the union will also get severed. RSS is keen to scrap Articles 35A and 370 from Kashmir and so has approached the Supreme Court,” Soz said.
“RSS has already caused a lot of damage to the country. Who is at Supreme Court presently? RSS. Who has filed the petition on Article 35? RSS. This is not going to give any benefit in 2019? There will be chaos in 2019. The government will change in 2019 (after the Lok Sabha elections). And now, the RSS has approached the court to get Article 370 scrapped from Kashmir. This will sever the relationship between the state and the union,” Soz said.
Training his gun towards the Narendra Modi-led government in Centre, Soz said, “Our relationship is with secular India. Relationships cannot be established with the haters. So much has been damaged in the last four years and no further expectations lie ahead.”
“Today, mainstream and Hurriyat are on the same page and issue can be resolved through dialogues. Did the government speak to anyone? Our and our children’ lives are now based on what the government at Centre plans to do about Kashmir. Modiji spoke his mind through ‘Mann Ki Baat’ but he did not bother to listen to others. So far, what has he done for people of Kashmir? During his tenure as the Prime Minister, casualties suffered by security forces in terrorist violence has been the highest. This is a political issue and the solution should be political,” he said.
Speaking on the recent terror attack on Pulwama, Soz said that the attack was carried out by a local boy and he turned into a militant because of the paramilitary forces present in Kashmir. “What the local boy did in Pulwama was wrong. But the police made him a militant. If they don’t become a militant, what will they do? The paramilitary forces in Kashmir made local boy militants. This is homegrown.”
The Supreme Court is said to begin hearing on Article 35A from February 26-28 and it has led to a lot of anxiety in the Valley.
Article 35A, which was incorporated in the Constitution by a 1954 Presidential Order, accords special rights and privileges to the citizens of Jammu and Kashmir and bars people from outside the state from acquiring any immovable property in the state.
It denies property rights to a woman who marries a person from outside the state. The provision, which leads to such women from the state forfeiting their right over property, also applies to their heirs.
Several petitions, including those by political parties like the National Conference and the CPI-M, were also filed in the Supreme Court in support of Article 35A that also empowers the state Assembly to define “permanent residents” for bestowing special rights and privileges to them.
The state government, while defending the article, had cited two verdicts of the constitution benches of the Supreme Court in 1961 and 1969, which had upheld the powers of the president under Article 370(1)(d) of the Constitution to pass constitutional orders.
The Supreme Court is said to begin pleas of Article 35A from February 26-28.
Coming up of new parties, alliances dangerous for Kashmir: Experts
Srinagar, Jun 19: The coming up of new political parties and alliances ahead of assembly polls can be dangerous for Kashmir as it will lead to the fractured mandate, thereby favouring BJP, experts claim.
On Tuesday former bureaucrat Shah Faesal and independent legislator from Langate Er Abdul Rasheed announced “Peoples United Front” for upcoming assembly polls.
Political pundits, however, believe that the fractured mandate led by such alliances in the upcoming assembly polls was aimed to divide Kashmiris.
“It is a very dangerous approach and Kashmiris should not allow the fractured mandate. Those who care about Kashmir should support one party of unit instead of paving way for fractured mandate due to these alliances,” said noted academician and an expert in politics, Sidiq Wahid.
The formation of new political alliances, he said, was a “policy of Government of India for a decade to divide Kashmiris.”
“I really feel that this new so-called alliance that has been formed is mudding the waters,” Wahid said.
Another expert in politics, Prof Gul Mohammad Wani, said the suspicions and doubts among people will intensify when centres rule is extends its rule to the state.
“Even after holding Panchayat, Municipal election or parliamentary polls either, the government doesn’t seem to be in a mood to hold assembly election in the state as of now,” he said.
Wani however said the emergence of new alliances could be due to failures by the political parties “to allow internal democracy in the state.”
“Mostly leaders or new groups emerge or come out of the existing political parties under such circumstances,” he said.
Wani said that the existing political parties including NC, PDP and Congress require increasing ideological and political space to build credible leadership.
Soon after the formation of new PUF, former chief minister and National Conference Vice President Omar Abdullah said the alliance was aimed to divide voters in Kashmir.
He questioned about lack of such alliances in Jammu or Ladakh regions of the state.
Srinagar, Sonawari, Awantipora prone to floods: Study
Srinagar, June 19: Jammu and Kashmir has witnessed abrupt changes in climate over the years. According to a disaster management report, 13 districts in J&K, out of 100 districts in India, have been identified as ‘multi-hazard districts’.
“Majority areas of the valley, especially Sonawari, Awantipora and Srinagar, along with parts of Jammu are prone to floods. Upper catchments of all the tributaries of the Jhelum, Indus, Chenab and Tawi rivers are prone to flash floods,” the report said. All these areas were worst hit by September-2014 floods and are prone to floods.
While the recent study says that out of the 12 states, Assam, Mizoram and Jammu & Kashmir are extremely vulnerable to global warming.
“Based on this assessment, the vulnerability index is found to be the highest for Assam (0.72) and Mizoram (0.71), followed by Jammu and Kashmir (0.62), Manipur (0.59), Meghalaya and West Bengal (both 0.58), Nagaland (0.57), Himachal Pradesh and Tripura (0.51 both), Arunachal Pradesh (0.47) and Uttarakhand (0.45). Sikkim is the least vulnerable state with the index being 0.42,” the study says.
It says that, “Several drivers of vulnerability are evident for the state of J&K. These include, in the order of significance, least road density, no area under crop insurance, low area under forests per 1,000 rural households, high percentage of marginal farmers, low percentage area under horticulture crops, low livestock to human ratio and low percentage of women in the overall workforce.”
The study says that climate change is already occurring and impacting natural ecosystems and human societies.
It says, “To reduce these uncertainties and plan towards sustainable development it is essential to adopt evidence based adaptation planning in IHR. This requires an in-depth understanding of the key risks and vulnerabilities derived from scientific assessments.”
The study has been authored by IIT Guwahati Anamika Barua Associate Professor Deptt. of Humanities and Social Science Principal Investigator Rupam Bhaduri Research Scholar Centre for the Environment Vishaka Gulati Research Scholar Deptt. of Humanities and Social Sciences IIT Mandi Shyamasree Dasgupta Assistant Professor School of Humanities and Social Sciences Co – Principal Investigator Kritishnu Sanyal Project Associate School of Humanities and Social Sciences Mir Khursheed Alam Research Scholar School of Humanities and Social Sciences IISc Bangalore N.H. Ravindranath Professor Centre for Sustainable Technologies (CST) Key Resource Person Indu K Murthy Consultant Scientist Centre for Sustainable Technologies Tashina Esteves Research Associate Jagmohan Sharma Additional Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (Forest Conservation) Government of Karnataka.
Massive reshuffle in police, civil admin likely after June 27
Srinagar, Jun 19: A massive reshuffle in civil and police administration is likely to be ordered anytime after June 27 when the ongoing “Back to village” program launched by Governor’s administration across Jammu and Kashmir will come to an end.
Authoritative sources said that exercise for a massive reshuffle in civil and police administration has been set into motion with the proposals being processed for transfer of senior IAS and IPS officers holding key positions in the state administration. The proposals for deputation of several senior IAS and IPS officers and return of some others from central deputation to Jammu and Kashmir government have been set into motion.
In the likely reshuffle in civil and police administration several administrative secretaries are likely to be relieved of the additional charge of some key departments which they are overseeing presently in addition to their own duties.
The reshuffle could be ordered phase wise to dispel the impression about the working of some non-performing officers presently holding key positions as directors of some key departments and deputy commissioners of districts in all the three regions Kashmir, Jammu and Ladakh.
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