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Quality at stake: Kashmir University relies on ad hoc postings for functioning

Monitor News Bureau

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Srinagar, Mar 23: At least 20 top officials at the Kashmir University have been holding multiple charges, as authorities rely on ad hoc postings to run the institution.
In 2015 and 2016, advertisements were issued for appointing Registrar, Controller Examination, and several other posts in the varsity.
“These posts have not been filled and officials have been posted there temporarily,” an official said.
Professor Khurshid Ahmad Bhat, Dean Management Studies is holding the additional charge of Registrar, while he is also the in-charge Kargil and Leh satellite campuses of the varsity.
Same is the case with the post of Controller Examinations, which is at present held by the Additional Controller Examination, Dr Mohammad Yusuf Bhat.
Professor Azra Nahid Kamli, Director Central of Research and Development, is also the Head Department of Environmental Science, Coordinator Microbiology and, Dean School of Life Sciences.
Dr M S Sumbli, Chairman of Sheik ul Alam chair is also in-charge Director Convocation Complex.
Professor G N Khaki, Director Central Asian Studies is also Dean Students Welfare and in-charge provost of hostels.
Professor Mohammad Hussain is holding the dual charge of Head Department of Law and Dean Law School.
Dr Manzoor Ahmad Shah, Senior Assistant Professor of Botany Department is also in-charge Director Internal Quality Assurance Cell.
The post of Director Distance Education is vacant since retirement of Professor Nelofar Khan.
Maroof Qadri is in-charge Director IT and Supporting System.
The varsity authorities have failed to appoint Director Physical Education for the last several years. Professor Nisar Ahmad of mathematics department is holding its additional charge.
Prof S Mufeed Ahmad is in-charge Director State Resource Centre (SRC).
Chief Librarian post has been lying vacant, while an official has been made its in-charge.
Professor Inayatullah Tahir head Department of Botany is holding additional charge of Coordinator Bio Resources.
Institute of Kashmir Studies has no Director, while Muslim Jan of Media Education Research Centre has been made its coordinator.
Faruq Masoodi, a film maker has been ad hoc coordinator for the Media Education Research Centre for the last few years.
Professor Zohra Afzal, Head Department of Hindi, is also Dean Arts, Languages and Literature.
Professor M S Bhat head Department of Geography is also holding the charge of Dean Sciences and Environment Studies.
Professor F A Masoodi of School of Applied Science and Technology is in-charge Food and Technology Department.
Professor G M Bhat, Director Zakura campus of the varsity is also in-charge Principal Safapora Engineering College.
Similarly, Professor Akbar Masood, Head Biochemistry Department, also holds the charge of Clinical Biochemistry.
Faheem Aslam has the dual charge of PRO Kashmir University and Vice-Chancellor, while the former position has been lying vacant since 2007, when Abdul Musvi was terminated.
The three year term of Professor Khurshid Ahmad Andrabi as VC also ended on October 17 last year.
Dr Ashfaq Ahmed Zarri, Deputy Registrar has been given sensitive posting of Director South campus.
“It is mandatory that Director should stay at South Campus but every day he is travelling from main campus to South Campus,” the official said.
Kashmir University Teacher Association President, Dr Muheet Ahmed Butt, said ad hoc appointments were “affecting” the functioning of the varsity.
“We want implementation of one man one post in the university,” Butt said.
A professor of the Social Science Department said, “The research standard is degrading, as the people in the varsity are overburdened with additional responsibilities. Authorities claim implementation of ‘one man one post’ is still far from reality.”
“University Grants Commission (UGC) has approved full autonomy to Jammu University but no attention is being paid towards Kashmir University,” he said.
Vice-Chancellor and the Registrar could not be contacted for comments.


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Kulbhushan Jadhav case: ICJ to deliver verdict today

Press Trust of India

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New Delhi, Jul 16: The International Court of Justice will deliver on Wednesday its verdict in a case relating to Indian national Kulbhushan Jadhav, whose death sentence by a Pakistani military court based on an “extracted confession” has been questioned by India.

Jadhav, 49, a retired Indian Navy officer, was sentenced to death by the Pakistani military court on charges of “espionage and terrorism” after a closed trial in April 2017.

His sentencing evoked a sharp reaction in India. The ICJ, in a statement early this month, said a public sitting will take place at 3 pm (6.30 pm IST) on July 17 at the Peace Palace in The Hague, during which top judge Abdulqawi Ahmed Yusuf will read out the verdict.

 

Pakistan Foreign Office (FO) spokesperson Muhammad Faisal last week said his country cannot “prejudge” the decision of the ICJ in the Jadhav’s case. “We cannot prejudge the judgment,” he said. He, however, said that Pakistan has fully contested the case before the ICJ.

India moved the ICJ in May 8, 2017 for the “egregious violation” of the provisions of the Vienna Convention by Pakistan by repeatedly denying New Delhi consular access to Jadhav.

A 10-member bench of the ICJ, which was set up after World War II to resolve international disputes, on May 18, 2017 had restrained Pakistan from executing Jadhav till adjudication of the case.

A four-day public hearing in the high-profile case took place in February amidst heightened tensions between India and Pakistan following one of the deadliest militant attacks in J&K by Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed group that killed at least 40 CRPF soldiers on February 14. During the hearing in ICJ, both India and Pakistan submitted their detailed pleas and responses.

India based its case on two broad issues — breach of Vienna Convention on consular access and the process of resolution. Harish Salve, who was representing India in the case, questioned the functioning of Pakistan’s notorious military courts and urged the top UN court to annul Jadhav’s death sentence, which is based on an “extracted confession”. In his submission in the ICJ on the last day of the hearing, Pakistan’s counsel Khawar Qureshi said, “India’s claim for relief must be dismissed or declared inadmissible.”

Pakistan claims that its security forces arrested Jadhav from restive Balochistan province on March 3, 2016 after he reportedly entered from Iran. However, India maintains that Jadhav was kidnapped from Iran where he had business interests after retiring from the Navy.

Pakistan had rejected India’s plea for consular access to Jadhav at the ICJ, claiming that New Delhi wants the access to get the information gathered by its “spy”. However, Pakistan facilitated a meeting of Jadhav with his mother and wife in Islamabad on December 25, 2017.

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Kashmiri Sikhs hope for Kartarpur-like corridor to PaK Gurdwaras

Firdous Hassan

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Srinagar, Jul 16:  Voices are growing for LoC corridor to allow Kashmiri Sikhs to visit historic Gurudwaras in Pakistan Administered Kashmir (PaK) akin to Kartapur sahib.

All Party Sikh Coordination Committee (APSCC), an apex body of Kashmiri Sikhs, said there are several Gurudwaras in Muzaffarabad and Mirpur, which are held in high reverence by Sikhs across the globe.

“One such Gurudwara of Guru Hargobind Sahib Ji, the sixth Sikh Guru, is located in Naluchi in the neighborhood of Muzaffarabad,” said Jagmohan Singh Raina, Chairman APSCC.

 

Raina said the Gurudwara has remained closed for the last 70 years and was partly damaged in October 2005 earth quake.  “The Chatti Padshahi Gurudwara of Naluchi has been famous before partition when Sikhs in huge numbers from different parts of Kashmir used to go on a pilgrimage. Unfortunately, the Gurudwara has remained shut for the last 70 years and has now been converted into a police station,” he said.

Chairman APSCC said the Sikh community has asked Union Home Ministry to extend cross LoC Karvan-e-Aman bus up to Naluchi exclusively for the Sikh pilgrimage to the Gurudwara.

“We have written to MHA that people of different faiths live in Kashmir. A demand was made to allow Sikhs to go on a pilgrimage to PaK Gurudwaras,” Raina said.

The APSCC chairman said the Sikh body contacted Prime Minister of Muzaffarabad’s office in February and suggested 15 people who intend to undertake a pilgrimage to restore Gurudwara to its pristine glory.

“A journalist friend of mine helped us to take up the matter with the office of Prime Minister of Muzaffarabad. We later sent copies of 15 passports to Muzaffarabad PM’s office. We are following it up. We hope the pilgrimage will be allowed from Uri and Poonch side,” he said.

Ajit Singh Mastana who is one of 15 people who has enlisted for the pilgrimage, said sixth Guru of Sikhs, Guru Hargobind Singh had stayed in Naluchi after visiting Kashmir’s Uri area.

“Chatti Padshahi Gurudwaras are built at a place where our sixth Guru Hargobind Sahib Ji rested during his visit to Kashmir. At present we have Chatti Padshahi Gurudwara in Srinagar, Baramulla and Uri in Kashmir,” he said.

 Mastana who heads Punjabi Sahitiya Sabha said many Sikhs families are yearning to go on a pilgrimage to the historic Gurudwaras in Pakistan Administered Kashmir.  “The yatra should be allowed on the pattern of Kartapur,” he said.

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JK has stronger case of non-application: Masoodi on NIA Bill

Monitor News Bureau

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Srinagar, Jul 16: National Conference has opposed the NIA Amendment bill 2019 in the Parliament, saying the proposed amendment bill “infringes upon” the people’s right to liberty and life.

Participating in the debate Member of Parliament from Anantnag Hasnain Masoodi said the Parent Act of 2008 was not in tune with fundamental right of life and personal liberty.

“The amendment suffers from the same flaw.  The Article 21 while guaranteeing right to life and personal liberty provides that a person can be deprived of life and personal liberty in accordance with procedure established by law and such procedure must be just, fair and reasonable,” he said.

 

Masoodi added: “The three fundamental principles are to be taken care of at the stage of investigation, trial as also sentence and its mode of execution. In case of NIA Act wide and unbridled powers were given to the Central Government to constitute the special court as per its choice. The wide and unguided powers under NIA Act have prompted selective use of the Act and setting up of Special Courts as per choice and in an arbitrary manner. Resultantly, the Act leaves scope for violation of right of access to justice, an integral part of right to life and personal liberty.”

Kashmir, Masoodi said, is a ready example of such violation, where people who are prosecuted find it very difficult to get access to justice.

“There is no court and justice seekers from far flung areas are left without access to justice. While in case of other states NIA Act is said to trespass State list. In case of Jammu and Kashmir, there is no State list and all powers except those given by it to Centre belonged to State, there is a stronger case of non-application of NIA Act to State,” he said while participating in the debate.

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