39 bunkers removed from civilian areas: Govt

JAMMU: Jammu and Kashmir Government today said that 39 bunkers have been removed from the populated areas since October 2010.

Replying to a question from PDP MLA Abdul Rehman Veeri that whether it is a fact that the new Campus of Security Forces are being established in various civilian areas, Minister in-charge Home said, ‘’no new campus of security forces are being established.’’

He said keeping in view the present security scenario, 39 bunkers of security forces have been removed from the civilian areas since October 2010.

Replying to another question regarding details of persons killed, injured and arrested from March 2010 till date, the Minister said, From March 2010 upto February 15, 2011, 106 persons were killed, 996 injured and 4,064 were arrested while 137 were detained under Public Safety Act during this period.

He further said that 32 PSA detainees were released during this period and similarly 3900 people out of 4064 people arrested between March 2010 and February 15, 2011 were either released or bailed out. (Agencies)

Omar renews appeal to separatists to talk to interlocutors

Jammu : Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah today renewed his appeal to separatists to be part of the process of "political engagement" in the State and come forward to hold talks with central interlocutors.

"They (separatists) should come forward for talks with interlocutors. There is no need for them to surrender, no need to sign any documents (to hold talks with interlocutors)", Omar told the state Legislative Assembly.

Winding up the discussion on demands for grants for his departments, Omar said "you (separatists) have not to sign any agreement or paper. Come forward and hold talks. If you can freely say outside about Azadi, merger with Pakistan, Plebiscite, they should tell it to the interlocutors".

"They (interlocutors) have never said that they are not ready to listen to them. They have not laid any pre-condition", he said adding it (separatists point of view) would be registered in their report once they meet them and Centre will have to look over it.

Referring to the situation in the state, Omar said "Jammu and Kashmir should be engaged politically. It is a political society in the state which talks of their demands in Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh".

"I presented this point of view before Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi. We are not thankless people. We get full benefit of the packages but the basic issue of Jammu and Kashmir is political in nature."

The Chief Minister said that there can be different basis for governance like Autonomy, Self-Rule, 1975 Sheikh-Indira Accord, Constituent Assembly, Abrogation of Article 370, but it is all political in nature.

"That is why Interlocutors were appointed and talks were held," he said adding "I want one time settlement and not in piece meal. If it happens, it will be better for the people of the State".

Referring to the interlocutors, he said "I request Interlocutors that there is no need to go to press. You have been placed as a bridge for undertaking political dialogue. Please do it".

On efforts for a Kashmir solution, he said it should be acceptable to all sections and regions of the people of the state. "All sections and regions ideologies has to be kept in mind. It will not work if we think the solution should be Jammu, Ladakh or Kashmir centric", he said.

"I always say that the solution should be accepted to most of the people. It cannot be accepted by all (100 percent people) of the state. Such situation could not be created during the Sheikh Abdullah's government and it cannot even be thought of now", he said.

Referring to the healing touch policy, he said that 600 families (of the kin of youth who have crossed over to Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (POK) and Pakistan) have given their applications to the state government. "We have processed 25 applications so far in order to facilitate return of the cross-border youth back to their families in J&K," he said. (Agencies)

Revoke’Do Nishaan, Do Sanvidhaan’ policy to resolve J&K crisis:BJP

JAMMU : Bharatiya Janata Party today said revocation of ‘Do Nishaan, Do Sanvidhaan’, policy is a must to resolve the present crisis in Jammu and Kashmir and to end separatism.

BJP legislator Ashok Khajuria while speaking on Chief Minister’s grants during Legislative Assembly, said, “unless ‘Do Nishaan, Do Sanvidhaan’, policy will not be withdrawn, the J&K issue will never be solved.”

The BJP leader said it is the only medium to crush separatism adding, “we need to sit on, one table and besides solving the crisis should also discuss peoples problems.”

He, however, asked the government to avoid ‘conditional politics’ adding, “either accept Kashmir as an integral part of the country or go for Azaadi.”

The BJP MLA meanwhile, also asked Chief Minister Omar Abdullah to consider the demands of protesting refugees, technocrats, physiotherapists unemployed and employees.

He also alleged that a nexus of bureaucrats was operating in the state, which required to be curbed with iron hands. (AGENCIES)


4,270 persons arrested in Kashmir valley

JAMMU : The Jammu and Kashmir Government today said that 4,270 persons were arrested during the last 9 months in the Kashmir Valley which witnessed summer unrest last year.

“4,270 persons were arrested from June 2010 till February 25, 2011”, Law and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ali Mohammad Sagar said on the behalf of the chief minister in the Legislative Assembly while responding to a question of PDP member Zulfikar Ali today.

He said that 4,047 of them have been released by the Police till now, adding that 152 were detained under Public Safety Act (PSA) of which 38 have been released. (AGENCIES)

Baig for removing ‘trust deficit to strengthen regional bond

JAMMU : Advocating the strengthening of relations among the people of three regions of Jammu and Kashmir, and vis-a-vis between the state and the rest of the country, PDP senior leader Muzaffar Hussain Baig today said ‘trust deficit’ should be removed to strengthen the regional bond.

“We need to reduce trust deficit between the people of Jammu and Kashmir and India vis-a-vis among the people of all the three regions of the state to strengthen the bond of integration,” Mr Baig said, speaking in the House on Chief Minister Omar Abdullah’s grants in the ongoing Assembly session.

He said, “People of Jammu have trust deficit for the people of Kashmir and Ladakh and we need to reduce this deficit.”

On present Kashmir situation, he said, “Kashmir is a political situation and it cannot be solved through the developments. The issue is needed to be settled down in

view of present Kashmir situation, nobody is interested in investing to promote tourism.”

The PDP leader said big and transparent initiatives are required to settle down the issue. “PDP is always blamed for adding fuel to the fire but we assure you (government) that we will never hatch a conspiracy to pull you down from the chair.”

Meanwhile on ‘Sadar-e-Riyasat’ issue, Mr Baig favoured the proposal of local governor in the state.

“Instead of appointing the governor from outside the state, the local Governor could be of a great help in reducing the trust deficit,” he said, advocating the proposal of having the local Governor from any of the three regions of the state. (AGENCIES)

Rs 5 Cr compensation for 102 killed in “Kashmir unrest”

JAMMU : The Jammu and Kashmir Government today sanctioned Rs 5.10 crore as compensation for the 102 persons killed during last year’s unrest in the Kashmir Valley.

“An ex-gratia relief of Rs 5.10 crore has been sanctioned in favour of the next of kin of the 102 persons at the rate of Rs 5 lakh each”, Law and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ali Mohammad Sagar said in reply to a question by PDP legislator Zulfikar Ali in the Legislative Assembly today.

The state government has sanction the relief package as a one-time exception to the next of kin of civilians who lost their lives as a result of violence attributed to breach of law and order and were not found directly or indirectly involved in the violence, he said.

One eligible family member of the deceased person would be appointed in government services in the lowest grade or payment of cash compensation of Rs 5 lakh including Rs 1 lakh as ex-gratia in lieu of a government job, he said. (AGENCIES)

Law & order problems in J&K has impact on hydro projects

NEW DELHI : Contractual issues at its hydro power project in Himachal Pradesh may deter state-run NHPC’s ambitious plans of adding over 5,000 MW by March 2012 and law and order problems in Jammu & Kashmir has impacted the work on three of the company’s hydro projects — the 240-MW Uri, 45-MW Nimmo Bazgo and 44-MW Chutak projects — in the state.

The company which is setting up a 800 (4x200) MW hydro power project at Parbati in Himachal Pradesh is fighting a legal battle with the plant’s contractor, Robbins.

“With Parbati there is a big contractual issue...NHPC is involved in litigation with one of the contractors, the matter has been on for the past 3-4 years,” a Power Ministry official told.

He said the matter is in district court and the judgement was expected next month.

Parbati-II project was earlier due for commissioning during the current XIth Five Year Plan Period (2007-2012) and now the commencement of the project has been postponed to July, 2014.

The dispute with the contractor has also led to rise in the cost of the project...It has increased to over Rs 4,200 crore from around Rs 3,900 crore earlier.

As a result of differences with the contractor, work on the Parbati-II hydro electric project has been delayed, with blasting and tunnel boring work not progressing as per plan. Frequent modifications are to be carried out to prevent damage to site work.

The project involves setting up of a concrete gravity dam, tunnel, shaft, pilot shaft, a surface power house, turbine and a switchyard.

This is one of the many projects of country’s largest hydro power producer NHPC which is facing problems. The company’s largest 2,000 MW Subansiri project in Assam is also held up due to local opposition citing environmental concerns.

Geological issues have also hit NHPC’s 231-MW Chamera-III project in Himachal Pradesh.

NHPC had planned to add about 5,322 MW of power generation capacity during the current plan period but with more than five of its projects facing some obstacle or the other the achievement of the target seems unlikely.

This in turn would adversely impact the Power Ministry’s goal of adding 62,000 MW of electricity by March, 2012.

The current installed generation capacity of NHPC stands at over 4,000 MW. (AGENCIES)

Two moderate tremors felt in Kashmir Valley

SRINAGAR : Two moderate intensity earthquakes were felt in the Kashmir Valley today within a span of three hours but there was no report of any casualty, an official said.

The first tremor occurred at 9 AM with a magnitude of 4.7 on the Richter Scale with epicentre in Tajikistan in Central Asia, an official of Natural Disaster Management Cell said.

The second tremor occurred at 11.25 AM with a magnitude

of 5.2 on the Richter Scale with epicentre near the borders of China, he added.

The Kashmir Valley, which falls under Seismic Zone V, was hit by an earthquake of magnitude 5.8 on Monday prompting people to rush out of buildings fearing repeat of the 2005 tremor which devastated several border areas of the Valley. (AGENCIES)

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