Briefing November 13-19, 2022

JAMMU

Refugees from Pakistan being given refreshments somewhere in Poonch in April 1948, before being flown to Jammu by the IAF

The Jammu and Kashmir Government has taken up the issue of allotting custodian property to the refugees of 1965 and 1971 who had migrated to the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir during the two wars between India and Pakistan. An exercise to this effect has already been initiated by the administration on instructions of the government. Most of these refugees are putting up in the Jammu district after their migration. The government has decided that all refugees will be given land rights while each family has already been given Rs 5.5 lakh compensation.

As per the government, nearly 14,000 dropouts re-joined their schools in Jammu and Kashmir.

KASHMIR

Shabir Shah

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) attached the property of Hurriyat Conference leader Shabir Ahmad Shah under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act while the Jammu and Kashmir government seized nine properties along with two schools of banned outfit Jamaat-e-Islami in Shopian district section 8 of UA(P) Act. The ED provisionally attached the immovable property situated at Botshah Colony, Sanat Nagar, which ED claim was shown to have been gifted to Shah’s wife and daughters by his (Shah’s) sisters-in-law in 2005. The ED said that the attached property was purchased in the name of Shah’s sisters-in-law by Shah’s father-in-law in 1999. However, the ED said the father-in-law couldn’t justify the source of funds to buy the property.

The Jammu and Kashmir government said that 95,959 PMJAY-SEHAT golden cards have been issued granting health insurance to 49,526 families – covering 93 per cent of the target in the health sector.

SRINAGAR

The endangered royal stag, popularly known as the Hangul, has shown a gradual increase in its population and a fresh survey in this regard is being carried out through genetic methods. The International Union for Conservation of Nature’s (IUCN) Red Data Book, which contains lists of species at risk of extinction has declared Hangul as one of three species that were critically endangered in Jammu and Kashmir. The other two are the Markhor and the Tibetan antelope, aka Chiru. A census revealed that the number of Hangul males per 100 females was 126 in 2021 down from 153 in 2019. The number of fawns per 100 females has increased to 13.4 per cent in 2021 from 9 per cent in 2019. An official said the census reports available with the Wildlife Department show the annual Hangul counting started in 2004 using scientific methods which estimate the population at 197 in 2004, 153 in 2006, 127 in 2008, 175 in 2009, 218 in 2011, 186 in 2015, 214 in 2017 and 237 in 2019.

KUPWARA

Abdul Haq Khan

Former minister and several-time lawmaker Abdul Haq Khan joined the large chunk of leaders to sever ties with the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) after it lost power in the summer of 2018. Khan cited the party’s “indifferent” approach towards him as the reason for his departure even though he was party’s general secretary. Khan was considered a close confidante of PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti and represented Kupwara’s Lolab constituency. Earlier this year, Mehbooba had visited Khan’s residence in Lolab when the latter’s sister had died indicating that all was well. However, Khan left to join the bandwagon of over dozen-odd former ministers and lawmakers who have deserted the party.

 SONAMARG

The first-ever recording of the snow leopard from the Baltal-Zojila region has renewed the hope for the elusive predator in the higher altitudes of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh. The camera trapping exercises by researchers from Nature Conservation Foundation (India), partnering with Jammu and Kashmir’s Department of Wildlife Protection, also raised hopes for other important and rare species such as the Asiatic ibex, brown bear, and Kashmir musk deer in the upper reaches of the northernmost part of India. The Snow Leopard Population Assessment of India (SPAI) has been carried out so far in Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand.

SRINAGAR

Popular transgender singer Abdul Rashid aka Reshma died last week. As per Reshma, she was a female trapped inside a male body. In several of his interviews she said that she wanted to be a girl; dress, walk, talk and live like a girl, however, it was due to family pressure she mastered tailoring, Due to mocking in school, Rashid dropped out of the fifth class. He was trained to sew clothes. His singing talent remained subdued as he was discouraged by the elders of the family who took umbrages at his singing. Born in an extended family of six brothers and two sisters, Reshma, had to rebel with his family to settle her inner conflicts as they were not accepting his gender identity. Reshma whose innovations in singing made popular numbers was earning to raise the family of his slain brother. Her death by cancer was widely mourned across Kashmir.

KASHMIR

Daughter of Rajni Bala, a teacher from Samba mourning the killing of her mother in Kulgam on May 31, 2022

The children orphaned by militant attacks in Jammu and Kashmir will be eligible to avail of reservation for admission to MBBS and BDS colleges. The Board of Professional Entrance Examination (BoPEE), Jammu and Kashmir has released a detailed notification regarding the same. To obtain the quota, students need to at least pass the medical entrance examination. Further, they will have to apply separately for the quota.

DELHI

President Droupadi Murmu presents the National Florence Nightingale Awards, 2021 for Nursing Personnel, to Ahmadullah Wani of Jammu and Kashmir in New Delhi on November 07, 2022.

The President of India Droupadi Murmu presented the National Florence Nightingale Award 2021 to Ahmadullah Wani, a retired nurse from SKIMS. Hailing from South Kashmir’s Qazigund area, Wani is currently living in Srinagar for the last several years and has been instrumental in various nursing reforms at the hospital in the last several decades apart from his contribution towards seamless and effective patient care. The National Florence Nightingale Awards were instituted in the year 1973 by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India as a mark of recognition for the meritorious services rendered by nurses and nursing professionals to the society.

DUBAI

Haya Muzaffer (Skier)

Haya Muzzafer, a 21-year-old skier from Batamaloo (Srinagar), is representing India in the UAE Alpine Slalom Championship (FIS Race) in Dubai. Haya is part of a 12-member Indian contingent for the UAE Alpine Slalom Championship that started on November 2 and concludes on November 9 in Dubai City. The Indian contingent was invited by the UAE Winter Sports Federation on the recommendation of Ski and Snowboard India. Apart from Haya, Olympian Arif Khan and Waseem Bhat are also a part of the team from Kashmir. It is the first major international-level event participation for Haya who started skiing at the age of seven. FIS races are the set criteria for earning points for the Winter Olympics. Skiers from all over the world participate in such races to get a chance to make it to the Olympics. For Haya, who during the last two seasons has been shining for Jammu and Kashmir at the national level, it is a career-changing opportunity.

SRINAGAR

Bareen Shafi, a civil engineer from Srinagar secured a 100 per cent scholarship at the prestigious Manchester University, United Kingdom for her Master’s degree. Bareen will pursue a Master of Science degree in Pollution and Environmental Control. She completed her Bachelor’s degree from Valley’s SSM College of Engineering, Baramulla.

SRINAGAR

Alama Iqbal Library Kashmir University

Two University of Kashmir teachers, Dr Manzoor A Mir, Head Department of Bioresources, and Dr Bilal A Malik from the Institute of Technology Zakura Campus, were awarded for their innovative start-ups during the concluding ceremony of the three-day ‘Kashmir Expo Start-ups for Livelihood’ event at the Sher-e-Kashmir International Convention Centre. Dr Mir was awarded for his start-up in the services sector regarding breast cancer awareness, screening, and early detection while Dr Malik was felicitated for his start-up on the starch-free rice cooker. The awards were presented to the duo Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha who was the chief guest at the event.

DELHI

The Union Minister for Home Affairs and Cooperation, Amit Shah at a public rally in Baramulla on October 05, 2022.

Home Minister Amit Shah has said that no one would have imagined in the country that Article 370 would be read down without a single bullet being fired. Shah said Prime Minister Narendra Modi displayed commitment and read down Article 370 of the Constitution of India (which granted special status to the erstwhile State of Jammu and Kashmir). Shah reiterated BJP’s commitment to implementing the Uniform Civil Code in India. He said it is part of the BJP’s agenda, from the days of the establishment of the Jana Sangh, and added that it has always been the Congress that opposed the Uniform Civil Code because the party itself practised the politics of appeasement.

ANANTNAG

Gowhar Ahmad Tantray

Gowhar Ahmad Tantray, a 16-year-old boy from the Marhama area of south Kashmir’s Anantnag district has developed a low-cost portable egg incubator to benefit the poultry sector in the area. It is pertinent to mention here that an Incubator houses eggs in a warm temperature when a hen starts brooding. The incubators are is usually expensive and large in size but Tantray’s incubator is portable and costs just Rs 5000. Tantray’s incubator can hatch about 400 eggs at one time. It provides a suitable temperature of 37.5 degrees required for hatching and takes 18 days for the whole process to complete. However, the process can be shortened and even expanded, depending on the need. Tantray has now filed for a patent for his incubator.

DELHI

Nirmala Sitharaman

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman indicated that the central government may consider restoring the statehood of Jammu and Kashmir. The indication came while the minister was providing information about the distribution of funds by the Centre to the states as per the recommendations of the 14th Finance Commission. She said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi completely accepted the recommendation of the Finance Commission without hesitation and that is why today the states get 42 per cent of the funds. Jammu and Kashmir get 41 per cent of the money because it is not a state. She said that probably Jammu and Kashmir’s statehood will be restored soon.

ANANTNAG

Kashmir mathematicians Firdous A Shah (R) and Azhar Y Tantary, whose textbook on wavelets was published by Routledge in 2022

Global publisher Routledge of the Tylor & Francis Group has published a mathematics textbook by two young Kashmir mathematicians Firdous A Shah and Azhar Y Tantray that is considered as the “first of its kind”. The book Wavelet Transforms: Kith and Kin is about wavelets and will be out in the market in early 2023. Firdous and Azhar are the faculty at the University of Kashmir’s South Kashmir campus in Anantnag. Wavelet is a mathematical function used to divide a given function or continuous-time signal into different scale components. Experts assign a frequency range to each scale component and study them with a resolution that matches its scale.

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