Residents protest killing of youth by rashly driven car

Three Cops injured, Car, Police vehicle set on fire in RajouriAfter a youth was dragged and crushed to death by a rashly driven car near District Hospital at about 9.30 pm on Sunday, residents of the area held violent protest against the police alleging delayed action against the accused.
Protesters also set on fire a “Rakshak” vehicle of the police near the hospital and car of the accused near the Khandli bridge. In the police-public clash, which continued till 11.30 pm, three policemen received injuries.
Twenty-year-old Danish Malik, son of Ghulam Qadir, was on his way home along with his friend Rizwan Mirza on his Scooty when he was hit from behind by a rashly driven car, bearing registration No JK02B-3846, at about 9.30 pm.
The pillion rider received multiple fractures in the legs, while the deceased was dragged by the car up to 100 metres. The accused along with his friend fled from the spot towards Jammu in the car.
“The accused was drunk and after covering about 3 km he again hit the car with a roadside retaining wall near Khandli bridge and was caught by people. The police were provided the car number of the accused by people, but they failed to stop him at three police nakas, which irked the people” said S Khan, an eyewitness.
Another eyewitness Mohammad Iqbal said, “Had the accused stopped the car immediately after the accident, the life of Danish would have been saved.”
Irked over the delayed action by the police, people clashed with them near District Hospital and also pelted them with stones. During the clash, windowpanes of C-Block of District Hospital were also damaged.
A few protesters rushed towards the Khandli bridge and set the car of the accused on fire. The accused and his friend have been identified as Jai Ram and Surinder, respectively. Both are resident of Gawalior (MP).
The accused along with his family members and some friends is putting up in a rented accommodation near District Hospital. They prepare sweets and sell to shopkeepers in Rajouri and Poonch.
Rajeshewar Singh, SSP, has assured the people stringent action under law against the accused, who has been booked under Sections 302 and 109 of the Ranbir Penal Code.
Meanwhile, the police have also registered a case under Sections 332, 336, 341, 353, 435, 457, 429 and 147 of the Ranbir Penal Codeagainst the unidentified persons who have damaged/burnt the police vehicle and pelted policemen with stones.

Mughal Road major security concern - Johnny WilliamThe security grid has been tightened in the frontier districts of Rajouri and Poonch following sacrilegious acts at two Jammu temples, threats by militants to disturb and attack the Amarnath yatra and exfiltration attempt by three Kashmiri youths for arms training.
Johnny William, DIG, Rajouri-Poonch police range, said additional police posts had been set up on the Mughal Road and security tightened around all religious places in both districts.
“Though no infiltration has been reported from the two districts in the last few years, we can’t take the matter casually. The security grid on the LoC by the Army and in the interiors by the state police is already in place and any attempt by anti-national elements will be dealt with an iron hand,” said the DIG.
The DIG admitted that opening the Mughal Road had become a major security concern for security forces and intelligence agencies.
“There is no sign of revival of militancy in Rajouri and Poonch districts. The common perception during the security review meeting was being careful after opening of the Mughal Road as two militants were apprehended from Poonch district while attempting exfiltration for arms training,” said the DIG.
On May 16, three militants from Kashmir, after travelling via the Mughal Road, made an attempt to exfiltrate for arms training. One of them, Bilal Ahmed Bhat, a category A militant, was killed. The other two, identified as Mursaleem Rashid and Adil Ahmed Bhat, were nabbed by the Army.
William said militants were in a state of frustration and could plan strikes. Besides deployment of additional forces in many areas in both districts, frisking and checking on the Mughal Road with the help of intelligence agencies had been increased, he said.
Asked about possible infiltration attempts ahead of the forthcoming Budha Amarnath yatra in Poonch district, the DIG said, “Such attempts can’t be ruled out. However, it is fact that the militants make an attempt and we only react, barring a few specific intelligence inputs.”
Besides every security review and deployment for the Budha Amarnath yatra, the Army had been dominating heights, roads and tactical points associated with the Budha Amarnath shrine.

A paralytic patient at the government district hospital in Rajouri district was allegedly bitten by rats, as hospital administration said the incident was old and corrective measures have been taken.

Rats nibble patient in Rajouri district hospitalA paralytic patient at the government district hospital in Rajouri district was allegedly bitten by rats, as hospital administration said the incident was old and corrective measures have been taken.
Wali Mohammed, suffering from full-body paralysis and undergoing treatment at the district hospital, was seriously injured when rats nibbled at his body as he lay on his hospital bed two days ago, one of his relatives claimed.
“Due to paralysis the patient could not feel the pain. We noticed blood oozing from his body and found rats nibbled several parts of his body,” Farzana, a relative of Mohammed, said. However, the hospital administration claimed the incident was old and steps have already been taken to check pest menace.(ALSO READ: Jammu and Kashmir: Two student groups of BGSB University clash in valley (Video).
“This incident happened several days ago. I was informed that the patient was injured by the rats. We conducted an inquiry and have taken precautionary measures to control the menace of pests in the hospital,” medical superintendent (MS) of the hospital Dr Anees A Nabi said.
Nabi said, “The news should not be highlighted” as the hospital was doing a “great service” to the people of the district.
Rajouri deputy commissioner Shabir Ahmad Bhat said he will seek a report from the Chief Medical Officer (CMO) of the district and take action accordingly.
“I am not aware of the incident, but I will seek report from the CMO of the district and the MS of the hospital and only after that I can comment on the issue,” Bhat told PTI.
When contacted, CMO Dr Chaman Basin said he had no knowledge of the incident.

Official from center visits Rajouri to look into farmers problemsPrime Minister Narendra Modi’s ambitious Gram Uday Se Bharat Uday Abhiyan is being touted as the biggest-ever exercise since Independence to give a fillip to agriculture in the country, but the question is whether it will benefit people or meet the fate of previous schemes and programmes.
People of Rajouri district don’t have high hopes from the campaign as they see it as yet another government exercise.
They believe whatever funds will be released from the Centre will flow through the system in place for decades.
A Central government representative was on a three-day tour to Rajouri last month to talk to farmers and know about their problems.
The Gram Uday Se Bharat Uday Abhiyan was launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on April 14 at Mhow in Madhya Pradesh and culminated on April 24 when he addressed a maha panchayat in Jamshedpur in Jharkhand. Each panchayat of the country was involved through a live telecast.
The Union Government chose Rajouri and sent its representative to know the problems relating to agriculture and other day-to-day issues.
Mukul Ratra, Director, Department of Personal and Training, Government of India, held discussion with farmers and locals in several villages of the district.
During his tour, he noted down the problems of people but he did not have any on-time solution for the people, which was a setback for locals.
Rajouri is one of the worst sufferers of insurgency in the state. As the Line of Control passes through it, people become easy targets of Pakistani shelling and firing.
The terrain of the district is mostly hilly with a handful of villages situated on the Jammu-Poonch highway. Though the area is dominated by Muslims, non-Muslims are in a majority in the Nowshera and Kalakote Assembly constituencies.
The district is facing many agriculture-related issues as many areas are dependent on rain and many others do not have proper irrigation facilities.
Another problem is that farmers are not aware about their soil type and which crop to cultivate in their land.
Our reporter had travelled along with the Central government representative to various villages of the district to know the reality of the claims of locals and how their problems were being addressed.
Locals here face a number of problems. These include shortage of drinking water, lack of soil testing facility, scarcity of water for irrigation and crop damage due to hailstorm. Some other problems are that the people of the district who are entitled to pension under various schemes are not receiving it on time and most of the people do not know whom to approach to avail of the benefits of Central schemes.
Sarpanch of the Sarana bridge panchayat Mir Ahmed said their area was rainfed. He said the biggest problem was that the soil was not being tested.
“We want a soil testing facility and measures to help us improve our farming,” Mir said.
The government exercise this time was a little different as people were asked about their problems and what they knew about Central schemes. No ideas were, however, imposed on them as in the past.
“We want results. It is not that the government is unaware of our problems. The issue is the problems are not being addressed on time,” said Nirmala Devi, a resident of Siot village of Sunderbani.
People here say things may be changing at the top level with the PM making a policy to develop villages, but the system at the grass-roots level is not properly equipped to implement welfare schemes for people.
“There is corruption in the system. Even for money under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act, officials are demanding commission. Same is the case with other departments,” claimed Joginder Singh, sarpanch of the Savni panchayat.
The Director, Department of Personal and Training, Mukul Ratra, said his task was to talk, observe and report the problems being faced by the people to the Union Government.
“I have nothing to offer to the people as the policy has to be made by the people at the helm of affairs. The Prime Minister wants things done on a fast-track basis and this is why within hours of launching this campaign, we were told to reach out to people and file a report,” said Ratra.

Bus carrying wedding party turns turtle in Rajouri, injuring 45Around 45 people were today injured, two of them seriously, when a bus carrying a marriage party turned turtle in Jammu and Kashmir’s Rajouri district.

“The bus full of Baratis was on its way to Thandi Kassi from Saranu village when it turned turtle near Jamola bridge in Rajouri,” a police officer said.

He said that 45 Baratis were injured in the mishap, two of them seriously.

“The seriously injured persons have been shifted to Government Medical College and Hospital, Jammu for specialised treatment, whereas others are admitted to Rajouri District Hospital,” he said.


Seven day Holi bonanza begins in RajouriHoli, the festival of colours, has a special significance here as Hindus, Sikhs and Muslims celebrate the festival a week in advance by taking out processions on alternate days in the name of Lord Bhairon.
Rajouri city today witnessed the beginning of the 7-day-long Holi festival when the Bhairon Committee took out the procession of Bhairon Devta which passed through various bazaars and lanes followed by hundreds of youth from both the communities.
Inhabitants of Rajouri city feel that by celebrating this festival they are saved from evils.
Tight security arrangements were made in the city during the procession as in the past there was a communal tension during the festival which led to large-scale violence.

Locals protest move to establish firing range in AkhnoorOpposing the move to establish Army firing range in Akhnoor, residents of the area today protested in huge numbers under the leadership of Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC) senior vice-president Sham Lal Sharma by blocking the Jammu-Rajouri highway for four hours.
Villagers said the proposal would be a threat to the lives of thousands of people and their property.
Sham Lal Sharma lambasted BJP MLAs, MPs and ministers and said without their consent this SRO 462 wouldn’t have been published, which clearly stated that any type of land either agricultural or non-agricultural could be used by the Army for firing range or other warfare purposes.
Sham Lal termed it as “a forced acquisition” where the acquiring authority has formed the intention to acquire agricultural land, regardless of how the person whose land is ought to be acquired is affected.
“This land acquisition is not at all ethical and is the result of a game plan of the BJP where not only BJP MLAs, but also BJP Cabinet ministers are equally responsible in creating this do-or-die situation for the people of Akhnoor,” he added.
Sham Lal said the BJP had backstabbed people of Akhnoor as the notification was published in such a way that it could not catch enough public attention. “This was intentionally done in order to escape any public objection, which further proved to be a hassle-free procedure for land acquisition by the Army,” he added.

Rajouri residents catch SPO for ‘burglary attempt’A Special Police Officer (SPO) associated with the Special Operation Group of the Rajouri police has reportedly been caught red-handed by local residents during his involvement in a burglary attempt.
The SPO has been identified as Bashir Ahmed of Saj village. Officials of the District Police Lines said the SPO in question was not on their rolls.
In the wee hours on Thursday, he was reportedly attempting to remove batteries from a tractor parked near Thandi kassi village under jurisdiction of the Rajouri police station.
Residents of Thandikassi spotted the SPO while removing the batteries from a tractor. When questioned, he fled the spot, leaving behind a motorcycle and a mobile phone.
Around 7 am, the SPO came again, claiming that he was from the police station and wanted to impound the motorcycle and seize mobile phone.
Residents apprehended him after noticing suspicious activities. The police were informed and a police party from Rajouri rushed to the spot.
The SPO was taken in police custody. He made an attempt to flee, but was apprehended by the police party. The SPO, motorcycle and mobile phone were taken to the Rajouri police post for investigation.
“I am innocent. I came to the spot after somebody informed me about a burglary attempt. Locals took me as the burglar and informed the police,” said the SPO.
“Whether or not the SPO is involved in burglaries requires a detailed investigation, which may take a few days. The motorcycle and mobile phone recovered from the spot don’t belong to the SPO,” said SSP Rajeshwar Singh.
Local residents said they had apprehended the Special Police Officer while he was attempting to remove batteries and had come to the spot on a motorcycle, which he might have stolen from another place.

A mother-son duo died after a member of Village defence Committee (VDC) allegedly opened fire on them in Rajouri district of Jammu and Kashmir, said an official.
Mother-son duo killed after VDC member opens fire in RajouriNews agency GNS reported that the VDC member Mushtaq Ahmad, son of Mohd Sharief R/O Mohra Dhaveen village in Budhal area of Rajouri district opened fire upon the woman and her four-year-old son after barging inside her kitchen at Samote village today morning.
“In the firing incident, the duo sustained serious bullet wounds”, GNS reported, adding that the injured were immediately shifted to nearby Sub-district hospital Budhal for treatment.
However, doctors present there declared both of them as dead on arrival, they said.
The deceased have been identified as Mother –son as Shamim Akhter (35) W/O Mohammad Din and Tawheed Ahmad (4).
Meanwhile, concerned Station House Officer (SHO) Kuldeep Raj Sharma while confirming the incident told GNS that they have seized the weapon of the VDC member while a special police team has been constituted to arrest the absconding accused.
“A case has been registered and the cause of the incident is being ascertained”, the officer said.
Following the killing of mother-son duo, the locals of the area took to streets and staged massive protests and demanded strict action against the VDC member.
When reports last came in, the strong protests were going on in the area.
Pertinently, On December 20, a youth national conference leader, Ishtyaq Ahmed Choudhary (26) S/O Fakir Mohammad of Kesar Gala was shot dead by VDC member Kewal Kumar Sharma in Potha village of Kalakote Tehsil of Rajouri district.

A majority of the transformers supplied by the contractors in Rajouri district under the Rajiv Gandhi Grameen Vidyutikaran Yojana (RGGVY) are allegedly made of sub-standard material.
Transformers supplied under Central scheme of poor quality - MLA RajouriThe Rajouri MLA raised the issue with the Executive Engineer, EM & RE, Rajouri Division, here today.
Following the power crises in Rajouri district, especially in the Rajouri Assembly constituency, MLA Qamar Hussain today held a meeting with the Power Development Department (PDD) officials, including the Executive Engineer.
Hussain expressed resentment over frequent damages to the transformers supplied by the contractors under the RGGVY. “The material used in these transformers is of very low quality and most of the transformers installed in the remote areas developed faults within months of installation,” the MLA said and sought an inquiry into the matter.
The legislator said he had already raised the issue in the Assembly and would demand an inquiry against the suppliers in the forthcoming Assembly session.
“Crores of rupees have been misappropriated by the officials concerned in nexus with the contractors by supplying sub-standard transformers,” Hussain alleged.
In many areas of Rajouri district, people are without electricity for months together due to damaged transformers and the casual approach by the PDD officials has only aggravated the problems of common man.
“There is no power in Lower Dodaj village in the Darhal area for the last two months after the transformer was damaged in the first week of October. We approached the junior engineer concerned who directed us to take it to the PDD workshop at Rajouri for early repair. We hired a vehicle and brought it to Rajouri on October 28, but the officials at the workshop refused to repair it saying we needed to follow a proper channel,” said Mohammad Nissar, a local.
He said after several requests the transformer was repaired and brought back by the villagers on November 2. “But immediately after its installation, it again developed some snag,” he said.
Inhabitants of the adjoining areas had recently held a protest demonstration before the office of the Deputy Commissioner and warned the authorities to repair and install the transformer within a week or face action.