Briefing November 20-26, 2022

HYDERABAD

Gun. JPG

Rajouri resident, Altaf Hussain was arrested by Hyderabad Police for selling fake gun licences on the basis of which people were purchasing weapons. So far seven persons have been arrested. The recoveries include 30 single-bore, and three double-bore guns, one revolver, 140 rounds, 34 fake weapon license books, 29 unused weapons license books, 9 weapon licences which were affixed with fake stamps, 6 rubber stamps and one unsigned NOC. Living in Hyderabad since 2013, Altaf is a security guard. Even his personal double-bore weapon has a fake licence. With the help of the security service he worked for and a local stamp vendor, he would manage to make the fake licences and sell them to the youth from Jammu and Kashmir who would work as guards in Hyderabad.

Pahalgam Club, Ashoka Hotel at Jammu and huts of Jammu and Kashmir Tourism Development Corporation (JKTDC) at Patnitop are among 12 assets to be outsourced.

SRINAGAR

Jammu and Kashmir Police have registered a case after shadowy TRF issued threats to a number of journalists working for two Srinagar newspapers. Taking the threat seriously, at least five scribes have resigned. Reports appearing in the media suggest that the security grid has found that a Turkey-based Kashmiri militant, who was masquerading as a journalist later, is behind the threat. Police believe TRF is a Lashkar offshoot. Police have raided a number of places including the residences of various journalists across Kashmir.

“Journalists in Kashmir now find themselves in the firing line from the state authorities as well as terrorists,” the Editors Guild of India said in a statement that condemned threats. The press body also said that the situation has “worsened further after these pronouncements by terror organisations, and there is a heightened sense of fear and insecurity in journalists, which makes it difficult for them to work freely.”

Of 6982 people with HIV/AIDS in Jammu and Kashmir, 3299 are on Antiretroviral therapy (ART).

SRINAGAR

Decades before India’s tile-makers started doing a brisk business in Kashmir, Khanyar was home to the local tile that was earthen, polished and hugely durable. As the market faded for them, most of these artisans died. Last one, the last of the surviving potters making glazed construction tiles was visible at a photo exhibition that IUST architect Zoya Khan organised. The Last Craftsman showcased master craftsman Ghulam Mohammad Kumar’s work and helped him tell his story. Right now, he is the only person making the Khanyari Tiles. Many people came to see the man and his craft that once was part of Kashmir’s heritage. He had a young man with him, who is his pupil and is actually working in the glazed pottery. Earlier, an excited Kumhar said, clay tiles were used in every house, but in the last few decades, they have disappeared.

Against 15000 berths, the technical education department got 35000 applications. Jammu and Kashmir has 53 ITIs and 29 polytechnic colleges (7 private and 22 run by the government). Two of these polytechnic colleges are managed by the Islamic University of Science and Technology and Baba Ghulam Shah Badshah University (GBSBU) Rajouri.

KATHUA

These people were convicted by the court in the kidnapping, rape and murder of the Rasana minor nomad girl in 2018.

The Supreme Court held Shubam Sangra, the key accused in the 2018 kidnapping, gang-rape and murder of an eight-year-old Gujjar girl in Kathua “not a minor” and ordered his trial as an adult. Refusing to believe the birth certificate and school records which had established the juvenility of the accused, Justice Pardiwala in his 66-page judgement, said the medical reports cannot be brushed aside. The accused is involved in a “grave and serious offence” which was executed in a “well-planned manner” reflecting his maturity of mind, the court said. The minor girl was kidnapped on January 10, 2018, and was raped in captivity in a small village temple after keeping her sedated for four days. She was later bludgeoned to death. The sensational murder led to the resignation of a number of BJP cabinet ministers and eventually led to the collapse of the BJPDP government in Jammu and Kashmir.

Declared unsafe by the Jammu Development Authority (JDA), all the old buildings, a market complex at WareHouse and Nehru Market in Jammu is being dismantled to pave way for the India Habitat Centre hub. As many as 210 traders and 132 families living there are being shifted to other places under the Jammu Smart City Project.

BHADERWAH

Sumo skidded off the road and plunged into a 300-feet gorge in Kishtwar district on November 16, 2022

Kirna Devi, a middle-aged housewife of Butla hamlet in Sartingal, preferred her two sons Michle Singh and Nixon Jaryal, when she had to make a pilot’s decision as a landslide crumbled her roof over the family. She pushed the two to another room as the roof fell over her. She was declared dead in the hospital.  In a road accident in Doda, four government officials including Superintending Engineer R&B Circle Doda, Executive Engineer, Assistant Executive Engineer and a driver were killed after their official vehicle slipped into a deep gorge during heavy rain in Assar area.

Kashmir’s power distribution corporation (KPDCL) has announced a 31-56 hours, a week, power curtailment schedule days after it hiked tariff by 8 to 22 per cent.

SRINAGAR

For years, a woman from an elite family was protecting a sandouq (trunk) stuffed with papers as her father’s only possession. Almost eight years back, she entrusted it to her relative with the plea to scan what it carried. Only last month, the INTAh team found it to be detailed data of Kashmir’s last Persian poet, Khawaja Mohammad Amin Darab. Understanding the importance of the treasure trove, an exhibition was organised at Amar Singh Club that invited hoards of Kashmir intellectuals. “We mined into the collection and examined folio after folio and assembled a selection into a thread that gives an insight into his life and also the times and the then prevailing cultural and literary landscape,” INTACH chairman, M Saleem Beg said. Poetry apart, Darab was scripting for peoples’ invites, writing marsiya on the passing away of eminent persons and verifying tarikhs on deaths qita-itarikhs or inscribing the verse on the inauguration of a shrine or mosque. Narwara-born poet belonged to Drabu’s of Narwara and his collection includes the list of 18 generations of Rinchan Shah, the Ladakh prince who was Kashmir ruler and the first official Muslim.

Almost 3000 kgs of rose flowers yield a litre of oil and one litre of extract.

PUNJAB

Simranjit Singh Mann

Shiromani Akali Dal (A) president Simranjit Singh Mann who was denied entry into Jammu and Kashmir has announced that he would contest Lok Sabha polls from Srinagar. After the government denied him entry, he went to court in Kathua. He is an MP from Sangrur in Punjab. “They (BJP) are saying that Jammu and Kashmir has become an integral part of India post abrogation of Article 370 but here a parliament member is not allowed to visit this part of the country,” he told reporters. In October, Mann spent several nights at Lakhanpur in protest against restrictions imposed by authorities on his entry.

The government has issued cancellation notices to 586 land allottees for not setting up their units.

SRINAGAR

Jammu and Kashmir Lt Governor, Manoj Sinha presented a Saffron tray in full bloom to the Prime Minister, Narendra Modi on November 13, 2022.

Jammu and Kashmir’s Lt Governor, Manoj Sinha presented a bouquet of Saffron bulbs in full bloom to Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The bouquet comprised a copper case on a papier machie plate. Kashmir had a bumper Saffron yield this year and expectations suggest that Rs 300 crore turnover may be achieved. Meanwhile, scientists are getting very positive results from in-house Saffron cultivation in vertical beds in laboratory conditions. “If the climate is challenging us, we are trying to see how we can adapt ourselves. Going indoors means that we are doing vertical farming,” scientist Nazir Ahmad Ganai, who is VC, SKUAST, said. Famer Abdul Majeed Wani has opted for vertical farming of Saffron for the last three years and he is happy.

Army has built infrastructure for housing 450 tanks and over 22,000 troops in Eastern Ladakh. Besides 40 helipads have come up.

MOGA

Even though the Kashmir Willow is getting global recognition on the pitch, Kashmiris are routinely facing off-pitch batting. After the final match of the World Cup that England won was over, students from Bihar and Kashmir fought a pitched battle on the premises of the Lala Lajpat Rai College of Engineering and Management at Ghal Kalan village. Many students from the rival sides were injured and nine of them were admitted to hospital. Police arrested many and set them free later. In AMU a spat between two students – the other one from UP, led to serious injury to the Mendhar student who is battling for life in hospital. The Aligarh incident was not linked to the T20 World Cup.

JAMMU

The Central Bureau of Investigations (CBI) has filed a charge sheet against 24 people, including a BSF Commandant and a number of Jammu and Kashmir Police and CRPF personnel, in a case related to the leaking of question paper for police Sub Inspectors recruitment. Of 24 persons named in the charge sheet, 21 were arrested. CBI believes Yatin Yadav of Rewari was the mastermind for accessing and leaking the question paper of the Jammu and Kashmir Services Selection Board through Pradip Kumar Katiyar, an employee of a printing press based in Delhi’s Okhla. Later, he used a network of middlemen and officials of Jammu and Kashmir Police and central paramilitary forces to target aspirants willing to cough up Rs 20-30 lakh to get through the recruitment process. Those facing the trial include Yadav, Katiyar and former Border Security Force (BSF) commandant Karnail Singh. CBI raided 77 locations in Haryana, Delhi, Karnataka and Jammu and Kashmir and recovered Rs 61.79 lakh cash.

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