Kashmir is on sale. Yes, it is the name of a female orange and white tabby cat that is available for adoption at the Delco SPCA. Kashmir, reports appearing in international media suggest, has come a long way. She was brought to the SPCA in December from a high-risk facility in Georgia. Kashmir is litter trained, spayed, up-to-date on vaccinations and micro-chipped and she can be adopted at a fee of just $40.
It is an innovative chit fund that nearly two dozen youth have created in old city. The members contribute on monthly basis and once in a year, it has a lucky draw. The winner goes to perform Haj on Mecca pilgrimage. They call it Ashal, an Arabic word meaning the easiest and it is in operation since 2008. The winner is out of the race but continues to be a contributor. Two members each performed Haj in 2010 and 2011. The programme will conclude after 12 years when all its members would have performed Haj. Right now, it has 31 members. Interest free, great idea! Go and join.
The Bagh (PaK) girl, Asima Akhtar Lone, who had married an erstwhile Kashmiri militant, Mohammad Ashraf Jahara from Branwar, Budgam in January 2010, was arrested in Saujian sector on May 10, 2010 when the couple crossed LoC to return home. Ashraf stayed in Poonch jail till December 2011 and was arrested after interrogation and debriefing. Back home, he was charged for twin murders that had taken place after he had gone to PaK but it took him another seven months in jail. Last week, Asma was set free and reached her Budgam home.
Come winters and the power suppliers start flying. The power grid corporation of India that owns and mans the energy artery to Kashmir has been flying over the Banihal Pass for the last few days. Initially, the state government gave its chopper to help its engineers identify the snag in the double circuit 400-KV power transmission line. Then the corporation hired choppers from IAF which airdropped seven engineers on the pass who repaired the line and were pulled up and flown back to Jammu. The snag was preventing wheeling of 250-MW to the valley already shivering in sub-zero.
It continues to be enigmatic. Two teenagers, Ankush Bhan and Pranshik Bhan, real cousins, residing in Gole Gujral belt of Damana, were stabbed in Amar Colony last week. They were watching a quarrel between two groups of youth while returning from their tuitions and somehow they were stabbed. Police acted and detained two accused, Maninder Singh and Harvinder Singh, from the bus stand when they were on way to Amritsar. Hence proved: anti-heroes exist in all ages, areas and cultures.
Apparently oblivious of the tensions at the LoC, the police managed State Disaster Response Force issued public advisory, asking people to prepare for nuclear war by building basement shelters. As the paid advertisement was published, media picked up the details and it became international news. The consequences led to correction, suggesting it was just a routine. Even the Chief Minister Omar Abdullah reacted terming it a “daft idea”. But it reiterated the evolved SOP: fire first, think later!