October 2022 - JK REVOLUTION
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October 2022

Srinagar, Oct 31 : When will the term of district development councils (DDCs) in Jammu & Kashmir end? This question arises as the law under which the 3rd tier of the Panchayati Raj system was constituted provides that a five-year term can be done away when common elections are held to all the tiers of the Panchayats.

A cursory look at the Jammu & Kashmir Panchayati Raj Act-1989 provides that “the term of the district development council shall be five years except for holding common elections to all the tiers of the Panchayats simultaneously so that all the tiers have co-extensive terms in the district”.

This legal provision has triggered questions on whether the term of DDCs would end on January 9, 2024 when the term of Panchayats and Block Development Councils will end.

The term of Panchayats would end on January 9, 2024 as they were constituted on January 10, 2019.

According to the Panchayati Raj Act, the Sarpanch, the Naib-Sarpanch and every Panch of the Halqa Panchayat shall hold the office for a period of five years from the date of its constitution.

But in case of a bye-election or elections to fill a casual vacancy, the tenure of the Sarpanch, Naib Sarpanch or Panch so elected shall be co-terminus with the term of the Panchayat.

As per news agency—Kaahnir News Observer (KNO), the term of block development councils will end on January 9, 2024 as they are co-extensive with the term of Halqa Panchayats of that block.

The block development councils in J&K were constituted on December 2, 2019.

An official said if the Government decides against holding simultaneous polls for three tiers of the Panchayati Raj system, the term of DDCs will end on February 24, 2026.

The DDCs were constituted on February 25, 2021.

The first-ever DDC election in Jammu & Kashmir was held in November- December 2020 after the Union Home Ministry amended the Jammu & Kashmir Panchayati Raj Act through an executive order by virtue of powers vested with it by The Jammu & Kashmir Reorganization Act- 2019.

In the election, the Peoples Alliance for Gupkar Declaration won 110 seats and BJP secured victory on 75 seats. This was the first major direct political activity in Jammu & Kashmir after the Government of India abrogated Article 370 and reorganized J&K into two UTs—(KNO)

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Waris Fayaz

Srinagar, Oct 31 : A militant was killed after forces foiled an infiltration bid in north Kashmir’s Kupwara district on Monday, while arms and ammunition were also recovered from the area.

A top official told the news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO) that based on specific inputs, a joint search operation was launched in Jumagund area of Kupwara, where a non-local militant was seeing trying to infiltrate.

Following searches, the militant was challenged by the forces leading to a brief exchange of gunfire from both the sides, however, retaliatory firing leads to the killing of the militant, official said.

A search operation was also launched following the killing of a militant, resulting in the recovery of one AK series rifle and other arms and ammunition, official added.

Notably, this was the second failed infiltration bid in Kupwara this month. Earlier on 26 Oct, 2022 a Pakistan based militant was killed in the Keran sector and a PoK national card and Pakistani currency were recovered from the slain militant. On 25 September, another bid was foiled at Machil sector in Kupwara in which two militants were killed—(KNO)

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Waris Fayaz

Sopore, Oct 31 : The Jammu & Kashmir Government has set the ball rolling for outsourcing of its lone apple juice plant in Kashmir Valley, which was set up nearly four decades ago.

The J&K Horticultural Produce Marketing and Processing Corporation (JKHPMC), which owns the plant, has floated a tender for its operation, maintenance and commercialization.

The plant was made operational in 1985 with a capacity of producing 10,000 metric tonnes concentrates per year.

The decision to outsource the plant was taken by the JKHPMC’s board of directors in its meeting held on July 26, 2021, saying operation of the plant by the Corporation was not a good option.

It authorized the managing director, JKHPMC to outsource the apple joint plant by signing a concessional agreement with a registered company/firm/agency associated with the food processing sector.

According to the minutes of the meeting of HPMC’s BoD, the outsourcing could earn reasonable royalty and would contribute to sustainability of the Corporation.

Meanwhile, locals told the news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO) that the successive regimes have turned a blind eye towards the plant and it has been lying dysfunctional from the last four years.

“If the plant would have remained functional, it would have generated crores of rupees annually,” they said.

Mohammad Saleem, a local associated with the fruit business, said they used to supply the leftover apples to the unit and were earning good profits.“But since the unit is not running, the leftovers are thrown away,” he claimed—(KNO)

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In a communique, a copy of which lies with the news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO), DSEK said that timings for the schools falling within Srinagar Municipal limits would be from 10 am to 3 pm and for schools falling outside the municipal limits of Srinagar and other area of Kashmir province it would be 10:30 am to 3:30 pm.

It also said that the order should be adhered to strictly by all the concerned authorities. “Any deviation in this regard shall be viewed seriously,” it added.

Pertinently, the Director of School Education Kashmir (DSEK), Tasaduk Hussain Mir earlier this month has said that if the weather condition permitted, the department will continue academics till December end to compensate the academic losses suffered during the COVID-19 lockdown—

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Waris Fayaz

Uri, Oct 29 : At least nine persons were injured when a vehicle they were travelling in met with an accident in Uri area of North Kashmir’s Baramulla district on Saturday.

An official told the news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO) that nine persons including four woman were injured when a vehicle, on way to Uri, fell into Hajipeer Nallah near NS bridge.

He said that soon after the incident, locals and a police party reached to the spot and evacuated the injured persons to sub-district hospital Uri for treatment.

He added that eight among them were later shifted to GMC Baramulla for advanced treatment—(KNO)

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Srinagar, Oct 29 : Weather department on Saturday said that snowfall and low temperature may lead to temporary disruption of surface transportation, mainly over Zojila, Mugha Road, Sadnatop, etc, during the first week of November.

“As per today’s conditions, for whole 1st week of November (1-6th) weather is most likely to remain generally cloudy with possibility of light to moderate rain/snowfall over middle and higher reaches of J&K at scattered places of J&K (forecast confidence >75%),” a meteorological department official said here.

He said during the period, there will be “drastic fall” in day temperature and there days will be colder.

Regarding probable impacts, he said, “Snowfall and low temperature may lead to temporary disruption of surface transportation, mainly over Zojila, Mugha Road, Sadnatop, etc.”

The weather department also reiterated advisory to farmers and urged them to harvest their agricultural produce, fruits etc. which are prone to snowfall and low temperature.

Regarding the temperature, he said, Srinagar recorded a low of 2.6°C against 3.5°C on the previous night. The temperature was 0.2°C below normal for the summer capital during this time of the year, he said.

Qazigund recorded a low of 2.2°C against 2.6°C on the previous night. The temperature was below 0.4°C than the normal for the gateway town of Kashmir, he told GNS.

In Pahalgam, the mercury settled at minus 0.9°C against minus 0.9°C on the previous night and it was 0.4°C below normal for the south Kashmir resort, he said.

Kokernag recorded a low of 5.2°C against 4.7°C on the previous night and it was 0.9°C above normal for the place, he said.

Gulmarg recorded a low of 2.2°C against 1.5°C on the previous night and it was 0.5°C above normal for the world famous skiing resort in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district.

In Kupwara town, the mercury settled at 1.6°C against 2.2°C on the previous night, the official said. It was 0.8°C below normal for the north Kashmir place, he said.

Jammu recorded a low of 16.0 against 14.6°C on the previous night. It was 0.1°C below normal for J&K’s winter capital, he said. Banihal recorded a low of 4.6°C (below normal by 0.3°C), Batote 7.6°C (0.3°C below normal), Katra 13.7°C (above normal by 0.6°C) and Bhadarwah 5.6°C (above normal by 1.0°C). (GNS)

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Bilal Dar

Sopore, Oct 29 : To develop cooking skills among students, a food & fruit craving workshop was organised by Mann te Salva, a Sopore based restaurant in North Kashmir’s Baramulla district.

The workshop titled “Food & Fruit Carving Technique Workshop” for students and art loving professionals was supervised by a chef, Javeed Ahmed, with the participation of students from different schools across the town.

Students and other guests in the workshop appreciated the initiative. “It’s good students are taking part in extracurricular activities as these workshops will help them in skill development,” said a radio jokey, Sahil Muzaffar.

The workshop was aimed to educate and inform students and exhibit careers in the food industry. We will be conducting more workshops in future as well, said Basharat Ahmed, manager Mann te Salva.

The workshop was supported by J&K PET welfare society, Tahoor, Radio Chinar, Unfold Press and Junaid Bhat photographer.

Concluding the workshop with a certificate distribution, Majid Imtiyaz, owner Mann te Salva extended warm thanks to students, guests and all those present on the occasion.

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Srinagar, Oct 28 : A small narrow lane leads to the four-room kacha house of this 10-year-old Rafqat Ali at Badamwari area of Hawal in Srinagar. The little kid lost his father to a fatal disease a few years ago after which the wheel of fate catapulted for him and brought worse for the entire family.

Rafaqat has two sisters, mother, and an elder brother. The family has somehow managed the roof of their one-storey house. As poverty struck this ill-fated family, this little kid didn’t look at this age and decided to help his family, especially his mother and sisters. His neighbor came as an angel for him and provided him with the stock of kangris (firepots). “He (neighbor) told me to just sell the stuff and keep the profit. I want to help my family in whatever way I can,” Rafaqat told news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO), as innocence reflected from his face.

After losing father, Rafaqats’ elder brother is a labourer and a helping hand to a person doing shuttering business. However, he doesn’t earn much. “I think by selling fire pots, I can save some money and buy rice and other grocery items. At times, we sleep empty stomach as we have no food to eat,” the little boy said amid a gentle smile. Rafaqat studies in class 5 at Government Middle School, Alamgari Bazar, Srinagar. He doesn’t want to quit studies.

“I want to continue my studies and side by side do some little business to support my family,” he said. “After my father was diagnosed with a fatal disease, we didn’t even have money for his medicine. After losing my father, my elder sister had to quit studies and my brother had to earn a living too. Now another sister wants to quit her studies too due to financial constraints,” the boy said. His mother is working as a peon at a school and the entire family is struggling to make ends meet. Inflation is taking a toll on this poor family as they hardly afford edibles and other grocery items.

Rafaqat leaves home soon after finishing his school along with the load of fire pots on his little shoulders. Thank God, he sells most of the stuff by evening. “I sell kangris of different rates. Since temperature has started falling in Kashmir, there is a huge demand for kangris. I am happy to help my family, especially my sisters and mother,” he said.

Rafaqat’s sister (name withheld) said her father died of blood cancer a few years ago. “I studied till class 10 and left studies mid-way due to financial problems. I used to cook food for my sister, brothers and mother,” said. “My heart cries with pain when I see my little brother leaving home to sell kangris, but I am helpless…”—(KNO)

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Waris Fayaz

Sopore, Oct 28 : The busiest road stretch from Sopore – Shahgund approximately 12 Kms has faced the neglect of the concerned authorities, causing immense suffering to the commuters especially patients.

Talking to the news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO), residents said that the road is dotted with huge potholes and has not been repaired for the last several years and the authorities concerned are least bothered about the sufferings of people.

The road presents a pathetic look craving for the attention of the government. Though the work process from Amberpura to Haritar was started days ago but that too lasted for a day only, they said.

“We are facing immense problems due to its incompleteness. Administration has ignored the importance of this road. The slow pace of the work and dilapidated condition of the roads itself speaks of the incompetence of the authorities, said a local, Suhail Ahmed.

He said that the stretch has not been repaired for the last several years and the authorities concerned are least bothered about the sufferings of people. “The dilapidated condition of this road also causes fatal road accidents”, Suhail added.

Iqbal Ahmed, a Sarpanch told KNO, that the road acts as an important link which connects several areas with Sopore and thousands of commuters, transporters pass through this road daily. “The road is in a bad condition. Big pot holes filled with water dots, making the movement of people very difficult”, Iqbal added.

The residents urged the Lieutenant Governor led administration to look into the matter, so that it could give a sigh of relief to them.

Meanwhile, the deputy commissioner Baramulla, Syed Sehrish Asgar told KNO, that the work process has already started and they are expecting it complete by December.

“If weather conditions remain favourable, the work would be completed by December only, and if not then completion is expected in the month of April next year”, she said—(KNO)

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Baramulla, October 28: District Development Commissioner Baramulla, Dr Syed Sehrish today visited various Panchayats in the district including Jal Sheeri and Nadihal in the connection with the first day of the ongoing ‘Back to Village’ Phase IV (B2V4) programme.

During her visit, the DDC met PRIs and Visiting Officers besides various deputations who projected developmental issues concerning their respective areas. On the occasion, the DC gave on spot directions to line departments for immediate redressal of issue of the people.

Further, the DC also reviewed the implementation of social security schemes, functioning of PRIs-assuring people that all of their genuine demands would be addressed on priority.

Speaking on the occasion, DDC highlighted the objectives of the programme and said that the programme is a milestone in achieving rural development besides listening to the grievances and issues of rural folk at their doorsteps. She stressed upon the people to avail the benefits that can reach to them under the programme.

Meanwhile, the DC said that the Visiting officers will conduct Gram Sabhas and public interactions from tomorrow as part of the outreach programme in Back to Village Programme.

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