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Kishtwar tense, under curfew after Parihar brothers’ killing

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Jammu, Nov 2: The Army Friday staged a flag march in Kishtwar town where curfew was imposed after a senior BJP leader and his brother were killed by unknown gunmen on Thursday night, officials said on Friday.
Kishtwar District Magistrate Angrez Singh Rana said that the situation was tense but under control.
“The Army staged a flag march in Kishtwar town in order to maintain law and order,” Rana said.
He said the curfew, which was imposed in the town on Thursday night, was strictly in place and additional security personnel were deployed in sensitive areas of the town.
Rana said there were no reports of any untoward incident.
SSP Rajinder Gupta said a hunt was launched to track down those involved in the case.
Following the killing of BJP state secretary Anil Parihar, 52, and his brother, Ajeet Parihar, 55, by unknown gunmen, people had staged angry protests in the communally sensitive town and manhandled senior police officials.
The district magistrate had requested the Army in the town and its adjoining areas to control the internal security situation that arose due to the killings.
He took the decision as he apprehended that violence might erupt and result in law and order problem, endangering the life and property of citizens.
The killings of Parihar brothers drew severe condemnation from all quarters.
The senior BJP leader and his brother were killed when they were returning home after closing their stationery shop located outside old DC office complex, officials said.
As two were walking towards their home in Parihar mohalla through a dark lane in Tapal Mohalla, they were fired upon from a close range by the gunmen around 8.40 pm, they said.
The assailants were apparently waiting for the brothers to return home, they said.
The people rushed to the spot after hearing gunshots and rushed them to the district hospital in Kishtwar where they were declared brought dead, they added.
As the news spread, locals rushed to hospital and the brothers’ house, where they held protests against the alleged failure of the administration and the police.
Angry people manhandled policemen, including the SSP, after arguing with them. They also clashed with the police and forced them to leave the hospital.
The angry mob raised anti-Pakistan slogans demanding arrest of those involved in the killings. The protestors later also took to streets and held a protest near the Kishtwar police station.
Anil Parihar was active in politics for over 25 years and had unsuccessfully contested the 2008 Assembly elections on a Jammu and Kashmir National Panther Party (JKNPP) ticket.
Ajeet Parihar was an employee of the State Forest Corporation (SFC).
Top political leaders including Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh have condemned the killing, though the police is yet to ascertain the motive behind the double murder.
“My heart goes out to the bereaved family. Spoke to adviser to Jammu and Kashmir governor, Vijay Kumar, regarding the incident. The police will leave no stone unturned to bring the perpetrators to justice,” Singh wrote on his Twitter handle.
Former chief minister and National Conference vice-president Omar Abdullah took to twitter and wrote: “Very sad news. My condolences to Anil and Ajit Parihar’s family and colleagues. May their souls rest in peace.”
Union Finance Minister, Arun Jaitley too expressed his sadness over the killing.
“Killing of BJP state secretary Anil Parihar and his brother in J&K’s Kishtwar is an act of cowardice. It is an extremely deplorable act. This is an attempt to derail the peace process in the region. My thoughts & prayers are with the family of Shri Parihar,” he tweeted.
BJP National President Amit Shah also tweeted about him being grieved to hear the news: “Just got the tragic news of killing of Shri Anil Parihar, Secretary @BJP4JnK, and his brother by terrorists in Kishtwar. This is a cowardly act that shames humanity. I grieve the death of my valued colleague and pray that God gives his family strength to bear this untimely loss.”
National Conference’s provincial president Devender Singh Rana condemned the killing as “barbaric, inhuman and most unfortunate.”
“Violence has no place in a civilised society,” Rana said, expressing concern over the incident and hoped that the people will together meet the “challenge posed by elements inimical to peace and tranquility”.


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Home Minister holds high-level security meet at Srinagar

Take all preventive measures to ensure peaceful Yatra: Shah tells security forces

Mudassir Kuloo

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Srinagar, Jun 26: Union Home Minister Amit Shah Wednesday directed the security agencies to be fully alert and take all preventive steps to ensure the violence-free Amarnath Yatra.

On the first day of his two day visit to Kashmir, Shah chaired a high level meeting to review the security arrangements for the forthcoming Amarnathji Yatra at SKICC.

The meeting was attended by Governor Satya Pal Malik, Union Home Secretary Rajiv Gauba, Union Special Secretary Home, (Internal Security), AP Maheshwari, J&K Chief Secretary BVR Subramanium, GOC Northern Command Lt General Ranbir Singh, heads of CAPFs and central agencies, senior army commanders, State Home Secretary Shaleen Kabra and other functionaries of the state government.

 

Addressing the press conference after the meeting, Union Special Secretary Home, (Internal Security), AP Maheshwari said that Shah laid emphasis on various points critical for the security of the Yatra.

“He directed all security agencies to be fully alert and take all preventive steps to ensure violence free Yatra,” he said.

Quoting Union Home Minister, he said: “There should be no laxity.  Strict enforcement of the SOPs should be ensured.  Senior officers should personally supervise the arrangements. Forces should ensure best possible optimum use of latest technologies and the gadgets not only for the security of the Yatra but also to facilitate the movement of the devotees and the tourists”

 He said Shah specifically drew attention of the Forces towards anti-sabotage as well as anti-subversion drills and the access control procedures.

 Union Special Secretary said that Home Minister underlined the importance of standard operating procedures for smooth convoy movement.  

“Timely dispatch of convoys should be ensured. After the cut-off timings barricades should be erected at suitable locations and no differentiation should be made between Yatris and Tourists. Barricades should be used at all lateral entry points during convoy movement. All lateral points should be manned 24×7,” he quoted Shah having told the security agencies.

Besides attending to medical emergency, the Home Minister has directed that preparedness must also be ensured to deal with any type of calamity or contingency. 

“Specialized units and trained personnel should be in place with due focus on the prescribed drills for the purpose. Best possible facilities should be provided in the base camps,” said the Home Minister.

While laying emphasis on the essential facilities for those deputed on the arrangements of the Yatra, he underscored the need for all the duty personnel to ensure proper conduct all throughout.

 “There should be no complacency on part of security forces or duty staff at any point of time during whole Yatra period. Whereas he advised all the security forces and various agencies to continue taking strict action against miscreants, Minister also reiterated the need to cover all the sensitive and vulnerable places including possible points of infiltration all throughout the State, in order to obviate any type of risk to the Yatra,” Shah told the security agencies.

Appreciating the whole-hearted cooperation of the people of the State in successful conduct of the Yatra, the minister reassured the commitment towards best possible arrangements. 

Reviews various development schemes, projects

Monitor News Bureau

Srinagar, Jun 26: During his first visit to Jammu and Kashmir, Union Home Minister Amit Shah took a detailed review of various development schemes and projects in the State.

The review meeting in Srinagar was attended by the Governor, Union Home Secretary, all the four Advisors, Chief Secretary and Senior officials of the State and Central Government.

The development review meeting focused on accelerating development, building infrastructure, good governance, inclusive growth for all communities, employment generating scheme for the youth to name a few.

Home Minister asked the State Government to ensure that poorest of the poor of Jammu and Kashmir should get the benefits of Good Governance in all spheres. He gave the following directions:

The State Public Service Delivery Act should be strictly enforced. Wide publicity should be given to the services already covered under the Act and more services should be brought under its ambit.

Newly established Anti-Corruption Bureau should be strengthened. Cases of rampant corruption by the High and Mighty should be taken up on priority for fast track investigations.

State Officers should be fully be sensitive towards:

Balanced development of all the three regions, – Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh.

Inclusive approach towards all communities; no community should feel neglected eg. Border Population, Migrants, SCs/STs, Socially and Educationally backward classes, Residents of Backward areas and economically weaker sections of the society.

The Public hearing programmes should be supervised by the Advisors, Secretaries and Collectors. A regular time should be fixed for public hearings at all levels, – Village, Tehsil, Sub Division, Division, District  and Secretariat. Public Grievances should be disposed off in a time bound manner.

Investments for generating large scale employment opportunities for the local youth should be facilitated. Renowned educational and health institutions should also be motivated to establish their Institutions in the State.

All vacancies in the State Government should be filled up in a time bound manner.

Demonstrative improvements should be achieved in all the Major flagship programmes of the Central Government such as Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana, Himayat, Ayushman Bharat, Swach Bharat Mission, Smart Cities Mission, Saubhagya, Beti Bachao Beti Padhao, PM’s Jan Dhan Yojana etc.

All the major development projects announced by the Prime Minister should be completed in a time bound manner. Out of Rs. 80,068 crores, 82% funds have already been sanctioned for 63 projects. Major projects include 2 AIIMS, 2 IIMs, IIT, Ring Roads in Jammu and Srinagar, widening and strengthening of national highways, tourism, health and power projects etc.

Union Home Minister Shri Amit Shah also said that he would regularly review the performance achieved in all the development projects.

Northern Army commander reviews security arrangement for Yatra

Srinagar, Jun 26: Northern Army Commander, Lieutenant General Ranbir Singh on Wednesday visited units deployed for security of Amarnath Yatra and reviewed the security arrangements on the axis of Baltal and Pahalgam ahead of Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s visit to Jammu and Kashmir.

Lt Gen Singh was briefed by commanders on the ground of sound coordination and synergy between all agencies of the government and measures being taken to ensure safety and security of pilgrims.

Home Minister Amit Shah arrived in Srinagar on Wednesday afternoon to review the overall security situation in Jammu and Kashmir and the security arrangements for the Amarnath Yatra in particular.

According to sources in Ministry of Home Affairs, over 1.10 lakh pilgrims have registered themselves for the 46-day-long annual Amarnath Yatra which will begin on July 1 and conclude on August 15.

Reports of Hurriyat leaders ready for talks a conjecture: Farooq 

Srinagar, Jun 26: Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister and member parliament Dr  Farooq Abdullah on Wednesday downplayed reports of Hurriyat leaders being ready for talks with Union government, saying it is all a ‘conjecture’.

“As the governor has mentioned a few days back that the Hurriyat leaders are ready for talks with the Central government, it is a conjecture. They haven’t issued any statement so far,” news agency  quoted Dr Farooq as having said.

While asserting that the meeting should be held, he said, “I hope they talk about it and get into a solution as soon as possible.”

Earlier, Governor Satya Pal Malik on Saturday said Hurriyat Conference leaders are ready for talks with Centre.

“You must have seen that the Hurriyat, which once shut the door on Ram Vilas Paswan when he came knocking, are now ready for talks. This is an encouraging sign,” said Malik.

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Stone pelting incidents declined in Kashmir: MHA

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Srinagar, Jun 26: The stone pelting incidents have declined in 2019 so far, compared to the number of incidents during the corresponding period last year in Kashmir, Minister of State for Home Affairs, G. Kishan Reddy said in a written reply to question in the Rajya Sabha on Wednesday.

According to the PIB: “Pursuant to the Government policy of zero tolerance towards terrorism, the State Government has taken stringent action to deal with stone pelting, including identification and arrest of stone pelters and instigators of such acts under relevant laws”.

It also reported that the number of incidents of stone pelting and arrests made in the state of Jammu and Kashmir during the last three years has declined.

 

In year 2016, 2,653 stone pelting incidents were reported, during which 10,571 youth were arrested and 276 persons were sent to jail.

Similarly, in the year 2017, 1412 stone pelting incidents were reported and 2,838 youth were arrested, 63 youth were sent to jail.

In 2018; 1,458 stone pelting cases were reported so far. 3,797 youth were arrested in these incidents and 65 have been sent to jail.

 “The Government has also constituted a Joint Monitoring Committee involving all concerned agencies at the central level and a Multi-Disciplinary Terror Monitoring Group (TMG) at the State level for sustained action against terror funding,” PIB reported.

Rules out intelligence failure in Feb 14 Pulwama attack

Agencies

New Delhi, Jun 26:  G. Kishan Reddy, Minister of State in the Ministry of Home Affairs said there was no intelligence failure in the Pulwama attack, on Wednesday in Parliament.

On being asked whether the reasons of Pulwama terror attack was a failure of intelligence, Reddy in Lok Sabha replied, “Jammu and Kashmir are affected by militancy sponsored and supported from across the border for the last three decades.

However, owing to the policy of zero tolerance towards militancy and sustained action against the militants by the security forces, a large number of militants have been neutralized during the past few years.”

He further added, “All agencies are working in a coordinated manner and the intelligence inputs are shared among various agencies on a real-time basis. The investigation by NIA into the Pulwama attack so far has resulted in identifying the conspirators, suicide attacker and the vehicle provider.”

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If Patel was made first PM, Kashmir issue wouldn’t have existed: Modi

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New Delhi, Jun 26:  Prime Minister Naredra Modi on Wednesday attacked the Congress by saying that if Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel was made the first Prime Minister of the country, the issue of Jammu and Kashmir would have been resolved.

Taking a potshot at the Congress for remembering Patel only during the Gujarat Assembly elections, Modi said the grand old party forgot to mention the late leader during the Lok Sabha polls.

Addressing the Rajya Sabha as part the motion of thanks to President Ram Nath Kovind’s address to the Parliament, Modi said: “We think that if Sardar Saheb (Vallabhbhai Patel) was made the first Prime Minister of India, the issue of Jammu and Kashmir would have been resolved.”

 

Modi further said even the problems existing in the villages today would have been resolved had Patel been made the first Prime Minister.

“Sardar Patel was a true Congressman. He was made the first Home Minister of the country. But I am surprised as the Congress remembers him only during the Gujarat elections when his pictures become visible in the party’s posters. But during the Lok Sabha elections, his photographs are not seen in any of the party’s posters,” Modi said.

The Prime Minister also asked the top Congress leadership to pay tribute to Patel by visiting the Statue of Unity in Gujarat.

“I request the one top leader of the Congress to visit the Statue of Unity, which we built in Gujarat as a mark of respect to Sardar Patel. I also request Ghulam Nabi Azad to spend a few days in Gujarat,” Modi said.

The Prime Minister then took a jibe at Azad, saying that he had a blurred vision. “I think Ghulam Nabi Azadji is having a blurred vision… May be he is seeing everything through political glasses. Ghalib said something for such people — ‘ta umr Ghalib ye bhool karta raha, dhool chehre pe thi, aaina saaf karta raha’,” Modi said.

Attacking the Congress for demanding ‘old India’, Modi said, “Congress wants its old India where the decision of a Cabinet was torn by a leader in a press conference, where an Indian Naval Ship was used as a personal taxi, where scams were visible everywhere. But the people are not ready to accept the old India.”

Modi was referring to the Azad’s remarks made in the Rajya Sabha on Monday. In his motion of thanks on the President’s addresss, Azad had said the Congress wanted the old India which had love, affection and culture and where a human being was not afraid of another human being.

It may be mentioned here that in 2013, then Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi had torn a Cabinet decision on bringing an ordinance to protect convicted MPs and MLAs while addressing a press conference. And in the run up to the Lok Sabha elections, Modi had alleged that the late Rajiv Gandhi used aircraft carrier INS Virat as a ‘personal taxi’ to ferry his family members.

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