Sunday, March 25, 2012
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Chidambaram to review J&K security on April 10

JAMMU : (17:20 IST) Union Home Minister P Chidambram is likely to visit Jammu and Kashmir on April 10 to review the security situation in the state, sources here today said. “Mr Chidambram is likely to review the security situation in Jammu and Kashmir during his day-long visit to this winter capital on April 10,” the sources told......more


Ill fated bus lying in the gorge near Nashri on Jammu-Srinagar
Ill fated bus lying in the gorge near Nashri on Jammu-Srinagar
National Highway on Saturday. -Excelsior/Parvez

(See more pics....)

Bus, van roll down into gorge, Chenab
Two minors among 8 killed, 38 injured in tragic accidents
* 9 seriously wounded airlifted to GMC

Excelsior Correspondent

JAMMU, Mar 24: Two minors were among eight persons killed and 38 others sustained injuries, nine of them critically, in two tragic road accidents on Jammu-Srinagar National Highway 1A and Batote-Doda National Highway 1B early this morning. Nine of the severely injured persons were airlifted in the Indian Air Force chopper to Jammu for specialized treatment in the Government Medical College and Hospital. Reports said that two minor children and their mother were killed when a Maruti van, they were traveling in, rolled down into river Chenab near Koda Pani, 28 kilometers from Doda towards Jammu, on Batote-Kishtwar National Highway 1B at around 9 am. The ill-fated vehicle bearing registration number JK06-0352 was on its way from Doda to Jammu when it met with tragic accident. Police said that at Koda Pani, one of the tyres of the van got punctured and driver Gul Mohd, a resident of Chapnari parked the vehicle on road side in order to change the tyre.While Gul Mohd was looking for tools in the dickey of the vehicle to change the tyre, one of the children changed the gear of the vehicle as a result of which it started moving on the sloppy road. Before Gul Mohd could make efforts to stop the vehicle, it rolled down into river Chenab......more


Maoists kidnap MLA, talks suspended

BHUBANESWAR, Mar 24: Maoists today abducted a ruling BJD MLA when he was returning home from Koraput district, leading to suspension of negotiations with the authorities for the release of two Italian nationals taken hostage by the rebels 10 days ago. In a further setback to efforts to secure the release of the two Italians, two mediators B D Sharma and Dandapani Mohanty appointed by the Maoists opted out saying the atmosphere is "not conducive" for talks, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik told reporters and made a fresh appeal to Maoists to free the MLA and the two Italians on humanitarian grounds. About 50 armed Maoists stopped the vehicle of Laxmipur MLA Jhina Hikaka near Toyaput where the road had been dug up and a truck blocked the way, Koraput Superintendent of Police Avinash Kumar said....more

Plan finalisation delayed, next
meet after budget session

By Sanjeev Pargal

JAMMU, Mar 24: Finalisation of annual plan of the State was likely to be delayed as the Planning Commission of India was yet to hold second round of meeting with the bureaucrats followed by a final nod to the plan, Prime Minister’s Re-construction Plan (PMRP), Centrally Sponsored Schemes and loans etc. Significantly, the 12th five year annual plan, which was beginning with the start of next financial year of 2012-13 on April 1 in the next few days, was also yet to be finalized for all the States by the Union Government, official sources said. Upcoming financial year would be the first year of the new five year plan. According to sources, delayed budget session of the Parliament this year preceded by Assembly elections to five States, has resulted into the Planning Commission deferring plan finalisation of most of the States including Jammu and Kashmir.....more 

Farooq disillusioned with politics,
says it has more bricks than bouquets

By Mohinder Verma

JAMMU, Mar 24: Though he has been in the politics for several decades and remained Chief Minister of the State for a considerable period of time yet National Conference president and Union Minister for New and Renewable Energy, Dr Farooq Abdullah, is disillusioned with the politics, which according to him, is only a crown of thorns. "Politics is a dirty game….it is only a crown of thorns", Dr Farooq said while addressing a gathering at Abhinav Theatre here this morning after releasing latest poetry collection titled "Chaman Barg Rez" of Dr Darakshan Andrabi. "It has more bricks than bouquets. In politics your friends turn foes and abuse you more than your enemies", the Union Minister, who also heads oldest regional political party in Jammu and Kashmir, further said....more

Swarankars' indefinite strike
enters 8th day;  all shops remain shut

Excelsior Correspondent

JAMMU, Mar 24: Jewellery shops across the State remained closed for eighth consecutive day today on the call given by All India Sarafa Association, in protest against the Central Government's decision to impose excise duty of 1 per cent on unbranded jewellery and 4 per cent import duty on gold. Hundreds of Swarankars, under the banner of Swarankar Sangh Jammu Province (SSJP) held protest demonstration against the recently imposed excise duty on unbranded jewellery and import of gold. Jewellers from Chowk Chabutra area and other parts of the city including Pacca Danga, Moti Bazaar, Purani Mandi, City Chowk, Kanak Mandi, Lakhdatta Bazaar, Peer Mitha, Link Road and Jain Bazaar participated in the protest along with their colleagues from other parts of Jammu province raising slogans against the Central Government. The SSJP today appealed to Chief Minister Omar Abdullah to use his good offices with the Central Government and get the recently imposed taxes on unbranded jewellery and import of gold revoked.....more

India concerned over Pak nuke safety

SEOUL, Mar 24: Ahead of the Nuclear Security Summit here next week, India today voiced concerns over Pakistan’s nuclear programme saying it has "very little confidence" on the capabilities of its western neighbour on securing its atomic assets."We have very little confidence that their nuclear programs are secure or will stay safe," sources said when asked about the security of atomic materials in Pakistan.The possibility of "insider threat" was the prime concern among the Indian establishment and building capacities would be the key element in India’s pitch at the Nuclear Security Summit which begins here on Monday...more 

Azad visiting Bhaderwah today

Excelsior Correspondent

JAMMU, Mar 24: Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare Ghulam Nabi Azad is visiting Bhaderwah town of Doda district tomorrow to review development works and meet senior party leaders. Mr Azad will fly to Bhaderwah, an Assembly segment he had represented in the State during his two and a half years stint as Chief Minister from 2005-2008 and in the 2008 Assembly elections before quiting the seat to shift to national politics again, tomorrow morning from New Delhi will review ongoing development works. The Union Minister will also meet prominent political leaders of Congress and citizens during his brief stay in Bhaderwah before flying back to New Delhi in the evening. ....more 

14 more children hospitalised

Excelsior Correspondent

JAMMU, Mar 24: While a special team of doctors has been dispatched to Fagla village of Surankote in Poonch district where four children died of mysterious fever in last one week, the district administration sounded alert in the affected area as nearly two dozen children with mysterious fever have been hospitalized at Surankote. Reports said that the medical teams under the supervision of CMO Poonch, Dr Mohd Yunis Choudhary and BMO Surankote visited Fagla, Lasana and 2-3 adjoining villages and hamlets on Friday and Saturday and examined the children who are under the grip of fever. Most of the children who are affected belonged to particular area. Director Health Services Jammu Dr Madhu Khullar said that a team of doctors led by Dr Arvind has been dispatched to Surankote. This team has taken blood samples of nearly 270 children of the area and also collected water samples being consumed by the people......more 

Probe ordered into custodial death

Excelsior Correspondent

SRINAGAR, Mar 24: The State Government today ordered magisterial inquiry into the custodial death of a Sopore youth who was detained under Public Safety Act (PSA). District Magistrate, Kupwara, Mohammad Shafi Rather has appointed Additional District Magistrate, Kupwara as Inquiry Officer to inquest into the circumstances of the death of Sajad Ahmad Dar son of Ghulam Nabi Dar of Sangrampora, Sopore in North Kashmir district of Baramulla.  Dar was lodged in District Jail Kupwara under PSA and died at SKIMS Srinagar after being referred from District Jail Kupwara for treatment during intervening night of March 21 and 22.  The Additional District Magistrate has been asked to submit his report into the matter within 15 days.  Shops and other business establishments remained closed in protest against Sajjad Ahmad's death for second day running. Security forces were heavily deployed in the sensitive areas of the town to prevent any trouble in restive Sopore....more 

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