Finally, the highway town is getting ready to be the new gateway to Kashmir. The 18 kms rail link connecting the town with Qazigund through an Rs 1691 crore 11 kms tunnel is being formally thrown open by Prime Minister next week. Railway officials are busy test driving. Now the rail will link Baramulla with Banihal and it will change the latter completely. Many think that Banihal will be Kashmir’s new inter-state bus terminal. Trial run on this section was successfully done on December 28 last year and since then trains carrying stones are running on regular basis. Offering all weather connectivity out and into valley, the tunnel will reduce travel between two stations by half and will offer a good small road for any emergency. Maintenance road of the tunnel is being used to ferry accident victims.
It is perhaps the first instance of its kind. Army rounded up three youth in April at Sultan Chinkar in Murgo area on LoAC. They are Muslim youth and army knows they live somewhere near the Aksai Chin. Army has identified them as Aadil Ahmad, Mohammad Salam and Abdul Khaliq. But they cannot interrogate them because their language is not understood by the soldiers. It is believed they speak Yarkandi and they show gesture suggesting they are labourers. After making efforts, the army has finally traced an old man in Ganderbal who understands Yarkandi. But he is too old to reach the forward post or Leh. Efforts are underway to fly him in a chopper so that he translates. Interestingly, neither of the three can be formally arrested because Delhi asserts Aksai Chin is her own area.
In the overall ranking of top 500 companies, Dun and Bradstreet has ranked state owned J&K Bank at position 32 in the banking sector, as per the results released by the end of May. This ranking is for the overall income in 2012. The company has offered different rank on different parameters. For instance, for Net Profit, J&K Bank has improved its rank of 108 in 2011 to 91 in 2012. For Net Worth, the ranking improved by a whisker from 114 to 113 and on market capitalization the rank improved from 195 to 182. J&K Bank’s market capitalization is at Rs 39008.4 million at the end of 2012 and its net worth was 40931 millions.
Justice B L Bhat of the High Court has directed Police Station Miran Sahib to provide protection to an inter-faith couple that married recently. They had gone to the court against police accusing it of harassment. Identified as Mr and Mrs Jaan Mohammad, they had married in accordance with Muslim Law on April 24, 2013. Soon after, the police registered a case (FIR 61/2013) for the offences u/s 452/366 of RPC on the report lodged by the father of girl. After the court was convinced that the girl was a major and capable of contracting marriage out of her free will, the case was disposed and police was asked to secure them.
A family who found its seven-year old baby Muskaan throat-slit in a Rafiabad orchard has announced a cash reward of one lakh rupees to anybody who provides information about the killer. Resident of Laiser village, the girl went missing and was found murdered next day. So far, police and the parents lack any leads that will help unravel the murder mystery.
It was an embarrassment when a delegation of the female students visited DC Rajouri complaining that they were failed in their tenth class examinations by their examiners at Mogla Higher Secondary School in Kalakote. The reason: they refused to pay a bribe of Rs 200, per head. Officials say they have taken the cognizance!
After a small group of Kashmir Pandits broke into a sloganeering mob in Khir Bhawani temple against the chief minister for no plausible reason, Omar Abdullah used his twitter power to fight against the ‘rowdy’ group. He uploaded photographs and sent a series of short messages to nearly 300 thousand followers to prove that news reports were not totally correct. It was later taken over by the Pandit leaders in his party who issued a series of press notes to condemn the subversive miscreants. But Omar could not explain one thing: he spent more than an hour in the shrine last year and barely a few minutes in 2013.
65 is the number of buses that state government arranged to get migrant Kashmiri Pandits to Tulmula in addition to the private transport the migrants had used.
Rs 700 is the monthly rent that state gets from the lease of commercial spot where once Palladium Cinema functioned