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Shun violence and respect constitution, don’t make Kashmir a religious issue:CM

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Jammu : With her Government under fire from the opposition over the Law and Order situation in the Valley,Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti on Wednesday urged the people of the state to shun the path of violence and respect the Indian Constitution.
“Hum J&K constitution ko, mulk ki constitution ko nahi maante, to kis ko maante hain?Fir aapko milne waala kya hai?Kahan se milega? Mai aaj record pe ye baat laana chahti hun-J&K ke jo bhi log hain- jo milne waala hai isi mulq se milega aur kahin se kuch nahi milega (If we are not agreeing with the J&K constitution and Indian constitution, then what do we believe in?..What would you gain from such a stance? Today, I would like to bring on record that the people of the state would gain from only India and not from anywhere else),” Mufti was quoted as saying by ANI.
The chief minister added that her state’s assembly is the most empowered one in the country. “Ours is the most empowered assembly in the country. Goods & Services Tax was implemented in the entire nation at once except J&K where it was implemented only after proper debate in this assembly,” she said.
Mufti further said that she wants to put it on record that whatever people of J&K would get, they would get it only from India and nowhere else.
‘Ek jo political issue hai, usko religious issue ki tarah hijack na kiya jaaye. Mulq mein kya ho raha hai, kya nahin ho raha hai, magar hamari alliance mein harmony hai. Itna accha lagta hai jab subah mandir ki ghanti, uske baad azaan or din ko gurbani sunti hun’
This comes days after Mufti, in an open plea, requested Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Pakistan to bury the hatchet and become friends for the sake of local Kashmiris and jawans on the border.
“Sarhad paar Pakistan ko bhi main guzarish karti hun, apne mulk ke wazire-e-azam ko bhi guzarish karti hun- Jammu Kashmir ke logon ko is daldal se nikalne ke liye, hamare jawano ki hifazat ke liye, aapas me sulah karo, baatcheet karo, dosti karo (I request Pakistanis across the border and my country’s Prime Minister to help the people of Jammu and Kashmir come out of this mess and protect our jawans by finding solutions, holding dialogues and becoming friends),” said Mufti while addressing a rally in Kashmir’s Anantnag district on Sunday.
Ours is the most empowered assembly in the country. Goods & Services Tax (GST) was implemented in the entire nation at once except J&K where it was implemented only after proper debate in this assembly: Jammu & Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti in J&K assembly
The Chief Minister in her reply to the Governors address also said that care has to be taken that Kashmir issue is not highlighted a religious issue as religious diversity is the strength of people of Jammu & Kashmir. She also welcomed Farooq Abdullah’s remark in which he (Farooq) said ” Narendra Modi the incumbent Prime Minister commanding absolute majority in the parliamentary can resolve Kashmir issue.
Touching upon the issue of the rising tendency of youth to join the militant ranks Mehbooba said Burhani Wani was the creation of the previous regime but care has to be taken the youth taking violent path don’t become a challenge for the governments in future. She said Kashmiri for which Kashmir is known is visible in Kashmir and missing in Jammu and alleged that opposition parties are talking different languages in Srinagar and Jammu.
Saying that the incumbent government is setting up AIIMS in Srinagar in Jammu Chief Minister said ” late Sheikh Mohammad built up SKIMS in Kashmir but no such institute in Jammu”. She welcomed the remarks of former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah for acknowledging the performance of the Mufti Mohammad Sayeed led PDP-Congress coalition government and credited the achievements of then Mufti government in Jammu & Kashmir to the friendly gestures of then Prime Minister Attal Bihari Vajpayee, She recalled the historical steps taken by then Prime Minister Vajpayee including his bus ride to Lahore and repeated military adventures including war in Kargil. Regretting the increasing tendency of youth for taking to violent paths she hoped a scholar who has joined militant ranks will pay heed to the calls of return made to him by his colleagues and the family. She said that as regards the issue of political engagement government can’t force people to come forward for talks but Dineshwar Sharma appointed with a cabinet secretary rank the highest position in the country’s bureaucracy would get encouraging responses from the people who have refused to talk to him so for. Exuding confidence that the recent meeting between the National Security Advisors (NSAs) of India and Pakistan would mark the beginning of a new phase of cordiality between the two countries the Chief Minister said that stability in Indo-Pak relations would bring a perceptible change in the security and political scenario of Jammu & Kashmir.
She claimed that regularization of 60,000 casual labours is the biggest welfare measure of her government and alleged that previous government had exploited youth in the name of employment and taken huge bribes from them for the temporary engagements. Touching upon the purposes of her political outreach initiative the Chief Minister said that she during public darbars took on board the MLAs of the opposition parties and exhorted officers to work overtime for fully implementing the decisions and programs of the government in next two years. She said Panchayat elections to be conducted in a free, fair and transparent manner would further speed up the process of development.


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Kashmir receives fresh snowfall, aerial traffic affected

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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.

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JK showcases tourism potential at Asia’s largest travel show

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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.

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All election formalities to be completed by Feb end: Sources

Kashmir News Service

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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.

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