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Srinagar Mayor, Deputy Mayor will be from Congress: Mir

Syed Nashir Ali Gillani

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Srinagar, Nov 2: Congress on Friday said it would file nominations for the Mayor and Deputy Mayor positions in this summer capital of the state.
Addressing media persons at the party headquarters here, JK Pradesh Congress Committee President, G A Mir, said his party emerged as the single largest party in the recently held Urban Local Body (ULB) elections.
“In Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC), we scored a good number of seats. We had appealed through media to all those who want to join hands with us to keep Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP) away. We have received a good response,” he said.
After addressing a press conference, Mir said: “Ghulam Rasool Hajjam the congress candidate for the post of Mayor Srinagar Municipal Corporation has won by a margin of 2000 votes from a Batamaloo ward and party’s independent associate Sheikh Imran would be Congress backed candidate for the post of Deputy Mayor. The election for the post of Mayor and Deputy Mayor is scheduled to be held on November 6.”
“There is still time, if any anybody else wants to join us, he can. The doors are open for anyone with a secular ideology and who wants to work for the development of the city,” he said.
About the “tactics” used by the other parties, he said the people were “picked up and taken to five star hotels in Delhi”.
“The conscience of honest councillors cannot be purchased,” he added.
Expressing concern, he said the governor administration has committed a “big mistake” by taking the route of ordinance.
“Earlier, the elections for the posts of Mayor and Deputy Mayor were held in an open house. That was also done by the governments. Some 20 years ago, we had secret ballot system. Then open ballot was introduced through amendments,” he said.
He said the governor administration making the provision of secret ballot voting was “totally unconstitutional and politically motivated”.
“We would challenge the ordinance. Even Rajya Sabha members are being elected through secret ballot, but the agents keep an eye on the voters,” he said.


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Constitute SIT to investigate ‘custodial killing’ of youth: JKHCBA

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Srinagar, March 19: J&K High Court Bar Association (JKHCBA), Srinagar, strongly condemned the ‘custodial killing’ of Rizwan Ahmad Pandit of Awantipora.

JKHCBA said Rizwan Ahmad, who was a teacher by profession was arrested by the police some six months back without any rhyme or reason and got detained under J&K Public Safety Act and lodged in District Jail Kathua.

“His detention order was however quashed by the High Court, but he was not released. Instead he was booked in a frivolous case by police Awantipora, in which case also, he got bail from a Pulwama court, but despite that he was kept in P/S Awantipora unlawfully, for about twenty days.

 

It was after 20 days’ unlawful detention, that he was released, only to be re-arrested by the police again some three days back and while in custody, he was tortured and killed,” the statement said.

The Bar Association demanded that the custodial killing of Rizwan Ahmad Pandit, an innocent teacher, should be investigated by a Special Investigation Team, which should report the result of the investigation on daily basis to the Chief Judicial Magistrate, Srinagar, so that those, who are responsible for the killing of an innocent person, do not go unpunished.

It also urged International Community to take notice of the custodial killing of Rizwan Ahmad Pandit and raise their voice against the massive human rights violations, which are taking place in the State of J&K at the hands of Indian forces, to suppress the demand of the people for their right of self-determination.

In order to record its protest and show solidarity with the members of the bereaved family, the Bar Association has decided to support the strike call given by the pro-freedom leadership for tomorrow.

Custodial death: ANC to knock doors of SC

Srinagar, Mar 19 : Awami National Conference (ANC) on Tuesday said that it has decided to knock the doors of Supreme Court over the custodial death of a youth from South Kashmir’s Pulwama district today.

ANC Senior Vice President, Muzaffar Ahmad Shah told KNS that the party will move to SC and will file a petition regarding the death of a youth in custody today. “We will not shed tears but will take prompt steps by moving straightly to the SC with taking the bereaved family on board.”

He said there are judgments where persons involved in the custodial killings have awarded death sentence and “we will also seek a stern action against those involved in the death of the youth.”

He said the decision to move to the SC has been taken as there are several such cases where the families are awaiting justice in the Valley. (KNS)

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Sajad terms Sheikh-Indira accord of 1975 as ‘most notorious’

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Srinagar, Mar 19: Peoples’ Conference chairman Sajad Gani Lone on Tuesday said that Omar Abdullah and his family are ambassadors of Delhi in Kashmir and represent their interests rather than the interests of the people of J&K.

Sajad emphasized that while the representation of Delhi in Jammu and Kashmir was never a problem for the Abdullahs, the same cannot be said when it comes to representing Kashmir and its issues in Delhi.

“They have always been the ambassadors of Delhi in Kashmir but were never the ambassadors of Kashmir in Delhi.”

 

Revisiting the Sheikh-Indira accord of 1975, Sajad termed it as “most notorious” act in the erosion of state’s special status.
“The 1975 accord was the most notorious in the history of Kashmir wherein the Abdullah family conveniently traded the special status of Jammu and Kashmir in lieu of power. The infamous tradeoff between power and erosions, when Sheikh Abdullah was demoted from the position of Prime Minister to that of Chief Minister, without even contesting the elections was the most questionable act performed by any political party in the history of the the state. The very act of him taking the position of a Chief Minister was the first and biggest ratification of the special status and proves how the Abdullah family has been the ambassador of Delhi in the state from the very inception,” he said.

Reiterating how NC & Congress governments in the past have eroded the special status of Jammu and Kashmir to a point that it barely remains.“All alliances of NC with Congress further ratified and endorsed the erosions of J&K’s special status that was co-scripted by the two parties,” he added.

Strongly opposing dynasty politics, Sajad further said that National Conference is a classic example of how power when passed on as inheritance, is misused to the benefit of a dynasty rather than the welfare of its people, who end up developing a trust deficit in the government.

“These immature, juvenile tantrums are iconic in how Omar Abdullah was given power as an inheritance as opposed to a privileged trust bestowed by the people. He is cranky because an alternative has emerged and emerged from the grassroots. His idea of democracy is a musical chairs game solely between him and Mehbooba Mufti – an either/or scenario which both parties are comfortable with. He should wake up and realize his family, sooner than later, will be held accountable for its mass loot, plunder and the killings it lorded over in Kashmir,” Lone concluded.

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Kashmir issue will be solved by millennials: filmmaker Ashvin Kumar

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Mumbai, Mar 19: Director Ashvin Kumar, whose latest film “No Fathers in Kashmir” is a teen romance set in the Valley, believes the Kashmir dispute can only be solved by the educated and employed “young people of today” because they don’t carry the “burden of prejudice”.

The two-time National Award winning filmmaker believes the February 14 terror attack in Pulwama that claimed the lives of 40 CRPF soldiers reflects the fragility of conflict.

“The Kashmir issue will be solved by the young people of today, the millennials, who have gone to schools and colleges and are in jobs, they are in their 20s or 30s because these people are not carrying the trauma of Partition nor are they carrying the burden or prejudice of their parents and grandparents generation,” Kumar told reporters.

 

The director, who has earlier made the documentary “Inshallah, Football” and the Oscar nominated short film “Little Terrorist”, is looking forward to the release of his next project which shows regular life in the conflict ridden Valley.

The film revolves around the love story of two 16 year olds who are searching for their missing fathers.
Kumar said the film, featuring Soni Razdan, Kulbhushan Kharbanda, Anshuman Jha and Maya Sarao, tries to ask simple questions — what are Kashmiris like? How do they live their lives?

According to the Oscar nominated filmmaker, the Kashmir conflict is not going to be solved be either bureaucrats in New Delhi or separatists in Kashmir.
“It is not going to be solved by the kids who are picking up guns and throwing stones and causing dastardly acts like Pulwama. They are too trapped in their history, they haven’t had the opportunities and choices that other people have in the country,” he added.

His film, which releases April 5, has had a tumultuous journey to the theatres, facing problems in getting a Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) clearance.

It was initially offered an ‘A’ certificate but the makers protested. On March 11, following two hearings in December and January, the Film Certification Appellate Tribunal (FCAT) announced the film fit for U/A certification.

The filmmaker said the off-screen controversy around the film “dragged the spotlight away” from its message.”We live in intolerant troubled times. And both these words joined together is what has caused or forced us to think six times before we say anything… This is the tragedy of our country today.

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