Kargil to Kandahar, Atal steered India through major challenges

Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s tenure as prime minister saw India face several security challenges such as the Kargil conflict, the Kandahar hijacking and the Parliament attack, but he steered the country through them, using diplomacy and military force in equal measure. After being sworn in as prime minister for a second time in 1998, Vajpayee travelled on a bus from Amritsar to Lahore for a visit the next year which was widely acclaimed as the start of a new era in Indo-Pakistan relations. However, despite the Lahore Declaration, the bonhomie between…

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Muzaffar Hussain Baig to defend Article 35A in Supreme Court: PDP

Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) President Mehbooba Mufti on Wednesday held a detailed meet with her party ’s top leadership over the per cent political situation and measures needed to be taken to defend Article 35-A at country’s top court. PDP chief spokesman Rafi Ahmad Mir said party President and former Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti presided over the meeting of party leaders at her Srinagar residence today. He said the meeting discussed in detail the current political situation in the state and need to safeguard Article 35-A. “It was unanimously agreed…

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‘Non-locals roughed up’ while attempting to hoist tricolour at Lal Chowk, say police

A group of people, who tried hoisting the national flag at Srinagar’s Lal Chowk, were ‘rescued’ by the police on Tuesday after they were allegedly roughed up by locals. “A group of six to seven persons tried to hoist the flag at Lal Chowk. This created a ruckus in the area and the police team rescued three of them,” said Superintendent of Police (East) Dawood Ayoub. The incident occurred around 1 pm near Srinagar’s clock tower. The group, as per the police, consisted of non-locals. According to witnesses, the group…

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New ultras more educated, but less trained

The character of insurgency in Kashmir is rapidly changing with the induction of local youth who are less trained and poorly equipped than their predecessors but come with more good educational backgrounds. The new militants are locally trained and poorly equipped and none of them has undergone the rigorous guerrilla training or gained expertise in firing assault rifles and bomb-making – which their predecessors did. The distinction that draws the new militants apart, however, is their educational background. The new militants include PhDs, MPhils, MBAs, post-graduates and graduates. Khurshid Ahmad…

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Police may revolt in J&K if Supreme Court scraps Article 35A: Intelligence Agencies

Intelligence agencies have warned that there could be a “revolt” in the police ranks and massive unrest in Jammu and Kashmir if the Supreme Court passes an “adverse” order on Article 35A of the Constitution Monday, a news channel reported quoting sources. The top court will hear a petition challenging the constitutional validity of the presidential order of 1954, which defines “permanent residents of Jammu and Kashmir”, and bars non-locals from buying and owning land in the state. The Jammu and Kashmir police are on the forefront in the fight…

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In 25 police districts of J&K, only five officers from Kashmir at helm

The presence of police officers from Kashmir at key district-level positions in the state, especially in the Valley, is witnessing decline with every fresh transfer order. The transfers effected by the state Home department on Monday have triggered fears among the local officers that they would be dumped to insignificant positions in coming days. “Are not we competent enough to handle crucial assignments? How can officers with four to five years of experience handle crucial and sensitive districts in Kashmir? It is sheer injustice with us,” a group of police…

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Unity an eye-opener for Delhi: Joint Resistance Leadership

The Joint Resistance Leadership (JRL) comprising Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Mohammad Yasin Malik unequivocal, united and unanimous verdict by the people of Chenab valley region, Pir-Panjal Region, Kashmir valley to Kargil against planned attack on the identity and distinctiveness of Jammu Kashmir in the garb of 35 A should serve as an eye opener for Indian rulers and policy makers, In a statement, the leaders termed the unity among the people of Jammu and Kashmir on state subject law and unprecedented protest as heartening. “People across the…

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Mehbooba Mufti’s plan to quit coalition was leaked: Sham Lal

Sham Lal Sharma, senior Congress leader from Jammu, said recently that before the BJP pulled the plug on the PDP-BJP government, Mehbooba was planning to leave the coalition, but it was leaked from her office and it gave the BJP time to take the step first. He said while reacting to the reports of the BJP-PDP coming together to form the government again. “There are no chances of the BJP again aligning with the PDP to form the government in the state. The BJP has realised that they have failed…

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UN rights chief stands by report on HR abuses in Kashmir

The United Nations human rights chief has defended the world body’s June 14 human rights report on Kashmir that accused Indian troops of having used excessive force to kill and wound civilians since 2016 and called for an international investigation. “I will still stand by it,” United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Raad al-Hussein said at a farewell news conference at the UN headquarters in New York on Thursday, referring to the report which India not only rejected as flawed but its media also unleashed personal attacks on…

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Kashmiri Pandit group join protest against assault on Art 35A

We won’t allow tinkering of law, any dilution will lead to bloodbath: Prakash As Supreme Court is set to hear the petitions challenging validity of Article 35-A on Monday, a Kashmiri Pandit group and civil society members on Thursday staged protest against any assault and tinkering with Article 35-A. The Pandit group led by prominent Kashmiri Pandit and trade union leader Sampat Prakash assembled at Pratap Park, here and staged a sit-in protest against any tinkering with Article 35-A, which grants special privileges to residents of J&K. Carrying placards and…

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