Newsmakers

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SURVIVED: PDP president Ms Mehbooba Mufti survived a road accident near Jajjar Kotli, 35 km from Jammu, on the Jammu Srinagar highway. She had a broken tooth and her lips were badly injured. Doctors at SMGS hospital discharged her after first aid. The accident was a grim reminder of increasing road accidents that killed 950 civilians each in 2008 and 2009. Doda continues to be at the top with 232 deaths in 2008 and 110 deaths in 2007.

RECORD: Trans-Loc trade at its Chankan-da-Bagh created record on September 9 by crossing four crore rupees in two days. The last record was Rs. 3.47 crores. Imports were mostly green grams because they fetch a 100 percent profit here.

LOCKED: Jammu University VC Prof Varun Sahini was locked by agitating students for four hours last week along with Panthers Party general secretary Anita Thakur. The politicians had a meeting with VC over an issue related to student body elections that a rival group locked them in a chamber.

CONSIDERED: India is discussing a flight from Srinagar to Tajkistan capital Dushanbe to help Kashmir devotees visit the shrine of Mir Syed Ali Hamadani, the missionary responsible for Kashmir transition to Islam in fourteenth century. Another option is to have a direct link with Kulyab in Khatlan region, 400 kilometres from Dushanbe. The issue cropped up during President Pratibha Devisingh Patil’s visit to Tajikistan. For the first time an MP from J&K Ghulam Hassan Khan was part of her delegation.

RECORD: Separatist Dr Muhammad Qasim has achieved the distinction of being the longest serving convict of Kashmir with over 16 years of detention. His wife Asiya Andrabi is also behind bars for the last few months. Qasim was sentenced to life imprisonment in 2003 on charges of murder of H N Wanchoo, in 1992, a charge he has vehemently denied. Arrested in 1993 under PSA, a TADA court absolved him of all the charges in 2000. He was re-arrested in 2002 and tried for Wanchoo murder. A review board has recommended his release but it remains unimplemented.

TRANSFERRED:  The high court had sanctioned bail to four policemen detained for destruction of evidence in the Shopain rape and murder case. This comes, as the government has formally started the process of shifting the investigations of the twin rapes and murders in Shopian to CBI. The decision came the day when chief minister Omar Abdullah flew to Zawoora, a village barely 1500 meters away from the spot where one of the two corpses were located, to reassure the people that criminals would be traced and hanged. Incidentally, body of a Majlis-e-Mashawarat member Mohammad Hussain Zaragar was found the same evening.Police have detained one person for interrogation in the case.

REMEMBERED: On September 8, National Conference and Awami Action Committee remembered their respective leaders – Sheikh M Abdullah (27th death anniversary) and Mirwaiz Yousuf Shah (22nd death anniversary). While a brief official function was organized by the NC at Nigeen, AAC had a seminar in the Jamia Masjid.

SOLVED: Police have charge sheeted a Territorial Army sepoy Noor-ud-Din Peer for the “murder” of his “relative” Amina Masoodi, a 17 year old girl from Muqam Dolipora. He has been charged under sections 302, 456, 120-B RPC. A Jammu newspaper has reported that the police had compromised the investigations after “taking dictations from the higher corridors of power” and “evidently compromised professionalism and proceeded into the matter strictly in accordance with the public sentiment”.

TAKEN OVER: NHPC has taken over the operations of 450-MW Baglihar for two years in accordance with the contract signed between Power Development Corporation (PDC) and NHPC early this year. It will get Rs 150 crore plus taxes on the operation and maintenance services. The hydropower giant that incidentally lacks the expertise to manage the project is supposed to train the PDC officials for future management of the project. Meanwhile, five persons including an engineer from the project (Lahymer International), two students of Government Middle School Maitra (Ramban) and a motor-mechanic namely Ashiq Hussain were swept by the water currents of Chenab the same day.

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A journalist with seven years of working experience in Kashmir.

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