Exchange of fire in Tral forests, Policeman wounded, Army soldier succumbs; militants escape

A gunfight broke out between militants and government forces at Laam forest area of Tral in south Kashmir’s Pulwama district on Tuesday morning. Official sources said that a joint team of army’s 42 RR, SOG and CRPF have cordoned the forest of Goitango in Laam in Tral. As such the joint team intensified the combing operation, the militants hiding opened the fire triggering off a gunfight, they said. Following the brief exchange of gunfight, the militants believed to be three in number reportedly fled from the spot. Deputy Inspector General (DIG) of…

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213 Militants, 80 Security personals, 40 Civilians, 2017 was bloodiest in past decade

With all parameters of violence and conflict-related deaths marking a spurt in Jammu and Kashmir, 2017 has emerged as the bloodiest year of the decade, according to official data. The number of conflict-related deaths in 2017 totalled 333, which was three times higher than the lowest number of 102 deaths recorded in 2012, the calmest year in the region in three decades. The latest spurt in violence, most of it centred in the Valley is, however, part of the growing reversal of efforts to contain insurgency which is gaining increasing…

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Jammu communally-divided on Kathua rape-murder

From VHP to civil society, everyone making peace efforts Former minister ‘spreading hate’ in public rallies Congress defaming Govt: Dy CM Three months after the brutal rape and murder of a minor girl in Rasana, Kathua, a debate has started across Jammu on whether the society had been divided on “communal lines” with certain politicians and rightwing groups “sowing seeds of hate and suspicion” creating a sense of insecurity among different communities. After the Amarnath land row agitation in 2008, Jammu witnessed a sharp divide among the different communities but…

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Two accused cops in Kathua rape- murder case move HC to quash Crime Branch probe

The infamous Kathua rape and murder case on Monday took a new turn when two of the accused in the case filed a writ petition in the High Court seeking quashing of the Crime Branch investigation and a fresh inquiry into the case by the CBI. Advocate Veenu Gupta on Monday filed a writ petition on the behalf of Sub-Inspector Anand Dutta and Special Police Officer Deepak Khajuria. He said, “The chargesheet filed by the Crime Branch is full of discrepancies. “The investigation was shifted on three occasions from the…

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AFSPA goes from Meghalaya, restricted in Arunachal, Call for lifting from Kashmir Valley grows louder

The Union Home Ministry has removed Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA) from Meghalaya and reduced it to eight police stations in Arunachal Pradesh, an official said on Monday. “AFSPA was totally withdrawn from all areas of Meghalaya from April 1. In Arunachal, it is down from 16 police stations to eight,” the official said. The Act has however been extended by another six months in three eastern districts of Arunachal Pradesh — Tirap, Longding and Changlang — which border Myanmar and specific areas under eight police stations of seven…

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PDP’s Political Affairs Committee likely to discuss coalition issues, Kathua case

The Peoples Democratic Party’s newly constituted Political Affairs Committee (PAC), during its first meeting scheduled this week, will review and discuss the emerging political situation in J&K. The 11-member PAC — the party’s highest decision-making body — was constituted by PDP president and Chief Minster Mehbooba Mufti three days ago. “The PAC will meet this week,” PDP spokesman Rafi Mir told Kashmir Post. PDP sources said while no major decision was expected to be taken in the first meeting of PAC, all issues about the party, its alliance with the…

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Ahead of cabinet reshuffle, BJP ministers seek slots by playing caste card

The BJP is facing pressure from MLAs seeking portfolios in the council of ministers based on their caste ahead of the Jammu and Kashmir cabinet reshuffle which is likely to be carried out before 27 April. The Governor’s Office and the Chief Minister’s Office is slated to close in Jammu and open in Srinagar in May. According to BJP leaders, they are seeking an adequate representation of different castes, including Scheduled Castes (SCs) MLAs, Gaddis (Hindu nomads), Rajputs and Brahmins in the council. Of the 25 MLAs, the BJP has…

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Why India cannot accommodate a small Muslim majority state: Former RAW chief A S Dulat

Amarjit Singh Dulat, former chief of the research and analysis wing (RAW) and the former special director of the intelligence bureau (IB), criticised India for not being able to “accommodate Kashmir”. He was speaking on Kashmir and the need of the hour to solve the problem, while delivering a lecture at Patrakar Bhavan in Pune, organised by Kakasaheb Gadgil Pratishthan. “I do not think we understand how much a Kashmiri wants to talk and how much he wants to be heard. When there is so much chaos, no one wants…

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At Rs 74.40, petrol price hits highest level in BJP rule, diesel at record Rs 65.65

State-owned oil firms, which have been since June last year revising auto fuel prices daily, raised petrol and diesel rates by 19 paisa per litre each in Delhi on Sunday. Petrol price hit on Sunday Rs 74.40 a litre — the highest under the BJP-led government — and diesel rate touched a record high of Rs 65.65, triggering renewed calls for a cut in excise duty to ease burden on consumers. State-owned oil firms, which have been since June last year revising auto fuel prices daily, raised petrol and diesel rates…

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Let media do its job, don’t give it masala: Modi to BJP leaders

The Prime Minister’s comments assumes significance in the wake of opposition parties’ attempts to put up a united front against the BJP over Dalit issues. Do not blame the media for controversies that get created when you fail to exercise restraint, Prime Minister Narendra Modi cautioned Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) lawmakers on Sunday. Interacting with them through the Narendra Modi app, he advised the MPs and MLAs against speaking on subjects they are not authorised to speak on by the party. The PM’s remarks come at a time when statements…

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