JAMMU

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Home Minister, Amit Shah and LG Manoj Sinha in a security review meeting in Jammu on March 19, 2022

During his 2-days Jammu visit, Home Minister Amit Shah was part of CRPFs Raising day parade. He said within three years CRPF may not be required in Kashmir, Naxal areas and Northeast. Already, he said militant activities have fallen from 417 in 2018 to 229 in 2021 as a result of which the number of security men dying in militants attacks has gone down from 2018 (91) to 2021 (42). Insisting that post-370, the central forces have taken “decisive control” of the counter-terrorism, the minister emphasised proactive operations by ensuring real-time coordination.

“The resolve with which CRPF has been working in Kashmir, Naxal areas and Northeast, I’m confident that within next few years, in all three regions, we may not require the use of CRPF and maintain complete peace in three regions. I’m confident. And if it happens, the whole credit goes to CRPF,” Shah said. “I believe the biggest achievement after the abrogation of 370 is security forces having a decisive control on terrorism.” He made mention of Sangh leaders Shyama Prasad Mukherjee and Pt Prem Nath Dogra whose dream of abrogation of special status was realised. The abrogation, he said, resulted in the inclusive development of all sections of society, including the deprived.

Later, Home Minister presided over a security review meeting in which he laid emphasis on proactive counter-militancy operations and choking their logistical and financial support systems. He also visited the spot where a high-security prison is being constructed for lodging “treasonous and insurgent criminals” in Kathua.

Second, after Kerala, Jammu and Kashmir’s unemployment rate stands at 46.3%, according to Periodic Labour Force Survey April-June 2021 released by the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation.

JAMMU

Advisor to Lt Governor, Farooq Khan, while addressing a function organized by Dogra Samaj Trust (Mumbai)

Farooq Khan, the only adviser to the LG from Jammu and Kashmir has stepped down. A retired IPS officer, Khan was a key cop who opted to fight militancy in the 1990s.  After retiring as IGP Jammu, Khan joined BJHP formally and served as a national secretary of the BJP.  He was appointed administrator of Lakshadweep before being appointed advisor to then LG Satya Pal Malik in July 2019. He served in that position under two more LGs, including incumbent Manoj Sinha. It was not immediately known why Khan resigned. Some reports suggest that Khan, whose family has a close relationship with the Sangh, might be given a party role. However, a report appeared in a Delhi newspaper that levelled serious allegations against one of his close aides. “Khan was asked to resign over alleged charges and he did so on Sunday,” the report claimed.

110 students of National Institute Technology (NIT) Srinagar have qualified GATE exam 2022.

DELHI

Chinese Foreign Minister, Wang Yi in a meeting with his counterpart, Dr Shiv Shankar in Delhi on March 25, 2022

Days after the Chinese Foreign Minister, Wang Yi, spoke at the OIC Conclave in Islamabad, he made a flight to Delhi. “On Kashmir, we have heard again today the calls of many of our Islamic friends,” Wang said at the OIC meeting, insisting China’s investment in 54 Muslim countries is US 400 billion. “And China shares the same hope.” His statement triggered a sharp reaction in Delhi. “We reject the uncalled reference to India by the Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi during his speech at the Opening Ceremony (of the OIC meeting),” Arindam Bagchi, MEA spokesman, said. “Matters related to the Union Territory of Jammu & Kashmir are entirely the internal affairs of India. Other countries, including China, have no locus standi to comment. They should note that India refrains from the public judgement of their internal issues.”

Wang Yi’s visit that came after the still-unresolved tensions in Ladakh of two years witnessed his interactions with the Foreign Minister and NSA. The visit is seen as Beijing’s renewed engagement and an invitation to Prime Minister for a BRICS meeting to be hosted by Beijing later 2022.

Delhi also reacted with the Kashmir talk in the OIC summit. “The statements and resolutions adopted at the meeting demonstrate both the irrelevance of the OIC as a body and the role of Pakistan as its manipulator,” Bagchi said. “References have been made to India that are based on falsehoods and misrepresentation. The absurdity of this body commenting on the treatment of minorities, that too at the instance of a serial violator of human rights like Pakistan, is so evident.” Host Pakistan raked up Kashmir saying for lasting peace and stability in the region, it is essential to resolve Jammu and Kashmir. “We have failed both the Palestinians and the people of Kashmir. I am sad to say that we have been able to make no impact at all,” the Pakistani newspaper Dawn quoted Imran Khan as saying. “We are a divided house and those (Western) powers know it… We (Muslims) are 1.5 billion people and yet our voice to stop this blatant injustice is insignificant.”

Lt Governor Manoj Sinha said Jammu and Kashmir is expected to attract Rs 70,000 crore worth of investments in the next six months.

MUMBAI

Film The Kashmir Files poster

The controversial The Kashmir Files has finally fetched Anupam Kher, the Srinagar born Bollywood actor, a status of being part of a project that has earned Rs 200 crore in around a fortnight. Once upon a time, Kher wrote about Bittu, the son of a clerk Pushkar Nath, who worked in 522 films in 38 years and finally became a member of a Rs 200 crore film project at 67 years of age. The film, however, continues to create controversies – a car mechanic was beaten, an IAS officer was issued a show-cause notice and Dr Farooq Abdullah volunteered to get hanged if an impartial enquiry holds him responsible. Vivek Agnihotri, its director even claimed to have received a film poster that a woman has drawn with her own blood.  Communist leader, Sitaram Yechury said in Srinagar that the film will have ramifications on the ground as it polarised people. “The people belonging to any religion or sect including Muslims, Sikhs and Kashmir Pandits have suffered equally in Kashmir. Why did only the Pandits leave?” he asked. The film has omitted the role of the then Governor Jagmohan. “It has not been highlighted in the movie. His role should have been there.” Right now, however, it is Delhi Chief Minister, Arvind Kejriwal, who is facing the music. The Aam Aadmi leader whose party now rules Punjab has made a speech on the film seen by an estimated two crore people, in the Delhi assembly that triggered unprecedented avalanches on social media. “Some people are earning crores of rupees in the name of Kashmir Pandits and have given work of sticking posters to the BJP. Agnihotri earned crores in the name of Kashmiri Pandits and you were left sticking posters. What are you doing? Open your eyes,” Kejriwal was quoted saying. Reacting to suggestions making it tax-free in the capital city as is the case in eight states, he responded: “They (BJP) are demanding that the movie be declared tax-free in Delhi. Upload it on YouTube, the movie will become free and everyone will be able to watch it.” This led to another series of attacks accusing him of being an “urban Naxal”.

Intravenous heroin abuse is rising in Kashmir. Against 3852 cases in 2019, there were 13200 cases in 2021.

DELHI

Delhi Police have registered a case against the hotel that refused a room to a Kashmiri citizen even though he had pre-booked it. The OYO network has claimed that they have delisted the hotel from its listing. A brief video showing the managers at Hotel Pleasant Inn, in Jehangirpuri refusing accommodation to a Kashmiri businessman, identified as Faisal, had gone viral on social media forcing Delhi Police to respond and formally register a case. “I booked the room with Oyo Hotels. Why are you not accepting my Aadhaar card? I can give other IDs like a passport,” the businessman is seen asking. To this, the woman at the counter replies, “Sir, passport kahan ka hai?” From Kashmir, the man says. When he asks the woman to give him a reason, she says: “We have been asked by police to not allow anyone with a J&K ID.”

Federal investigator, NIA has registered 103 cases of terror financing since its inception in 2008 and arrested 786 accused. So far charge sheets were filed against 865 in 92 cases.

SRINAGAR

A house was damaged during an encounter between militants and counterinsurgent forces in the Kandipora area of Bijbehara Anantnag on Thursday, March 11, 2021. KL Image by Bilal Bahadur

The Jammu and Kashmir police have decided to attach immovable properties of civilians used for militancy in Kashmir. “The process has started for the attachment of some immovable properties which have been used for militancy as per Section 2(g) and 25 of the ULP Act. Don’t give shelter or harbour militants and associates. Legal action will be supplemented by property attachments as per law,” a police spokesman said. In two years, officials in the police said they have identified around a dozen houses where militants took shelter, planned attacks or where encounters broke out in Srinagar and other districts. Later, the top brass clarified that properties of willing harbourers will only be attached.

5900 households in Srinagar having smart meters are connected to three feeders for better power supply, LG Sinha revealed

DELHI

Danish Farooq (Footballer)

Danish Farooq, a Srinagar footballer, has been selected for the Indian National football. He will be playing against Bahrain and Belarus. Earlier, Danish was included in the 38 member India camp for the Bahrain tour, later he secured the place in the final 25-member team. He had played in Indian Super League (ISL) for this season for Bengaluru FC and has impressed the Indian National football team coach with his all round performance.

JAMMU

Vikramaditya Singh

Veteran Congressman, Dr Karan Singh’s son, Vikramaditya Singh, has deserted Congress and is likely to join his brother in BJP. “It is my belief that the Congress is unable to realise and reflect the sentiments and aspirations of people of Jammu and Kashmir,” he wrote in his resignation letter that he sent to Sonia Gandhi. Singh had unsuccessfully contested against BJP leader Jitendra Singh from Udhampur-Doda in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, after leaving PDP in 2017, where he was a lawmaker for two years. Singh was the first Congressman to welcome the August 5, 2019 developments.

SRINAGAR

Chairman and CEO of Bank Mushtaq Ahmad

The Central Bureau of Investigations (CBI) has booked former chairman of Jammu and Kashmir Bank Mushtaq Ahmad Shaikh and 18 others for an Rs 800 crore loss to the bank caused due to loans to REI Agro, which were issued in violation of guidelines, without tangible security and on fake documents. Others accused in the case include REI Agro chairman Sanjay Jhunjhunwala, and Vice President and Managing Director Sandeep Jhunjhunwala. The case was earlier probed by the Anti-Corruption Bureau of Jammu and Kashmir and it had found during its preliminary inquiry that loans worth Rs 800 crore were sanctioned to the group on the basis of fake documents between 2011 and 2013 and in violation of guidelines. While Mahim (Mumbai) branch had sanctioned Rs 550 crore, Vasant Vihar (Delhi) sanctioned Rs 139 crore in their favour against the supplier bill discounting facility and takeovers.

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