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Issue No: 09 Vol,6

Seminar on “Gender Justice and Responsive Governance”

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‘Success in Indo-Pak talks not a one day affair’

Group visa for Pak nationals may be put on hold

NewDelhi:AftersuspendingvisaonarrivalforPakistanisenior citizens, India may put on hold the proposed group visa facility to the nationals of that country in the wake of the unease in bilateral ties following the killing of two Indian soldiers along the LoC.The visa on arrival facility for senior citizens — part of the new relaxed India-Pakistan visa agreement — was put on hold by India hours before its operationalisation on January 15 folGhaziabad: Terming as “unofficial”PakistanPrimeMinister Raja Pervez Ashraf’s visit to India,ExternalAffairsMinister

Salman Khurshid today said successinbilateralissuesinvolvingthetwoneighboursisatime taking affair.The Minister also

said that he would not be able to give a time frame as to when official talks between the two nations could take place in the

future. “Success (in issues related to India and Pakistan) is not achieved in a day

Sun sets behind trees in the outskirts of Srinagar city on Sunday.................Pix Mehrajbhat

Yasin Malik returns to Revoke AFSPA as first step to Kashmir, house detained resolving Kashmir, Mufti to centre

Srinagar,Mar.10(KNS):Democratic Freedom Party (DFP) hasreactedsharplytothearrest and attack on the JKLF ChairmanMuhammadYaseenMalik andsaidthattheseattackswould not deter the freedom loving people.DFP said that attack on Malik is an attack on the profreedom people. According to statementissuedtoKNS,bythese arrests the aspirations of the pro-freedom people does not die but gets a new vigor and heartiness. It is not for the first time that Malik has been arrested but this has happened before withMalikandotherseparatist leaders.“Geelanisahib,Mirwaiz

Curbs hit normal life in Baramulla Srinagar: Barring Baramulla, life was normal in the Kashmir valley with shops and business establishments functioning normally and traffic plying on all routes. The famous 'Sunday Market' onthreekmfromRadioKashmir,SrinagarcrossingtoHari Singh High streets, where hundreds of vendors are puttinguptheirstalls,alsoattracts buyers from different parts

sahib, Shabir Shah Sahib and Malik sahib have also been attacked before at the behest of thecommunalelements.These attacksandarrestswillnotsuppress the aspirations of the people of the valley for the right

of the valley. A report received from Baramulla said all bridges, connecting the old town with civil lines remained closed as a large number of security force and state police personnel remained deployed there. The bridges have been closed with barbed wire, the report said, adding that shops and business establishments remained closed in most parts of the town, where about two dozen persons were injured after security forces fired pellets and burst teargas shells and resorted to lathicharge yesterday. Several security personnel were

to self determination,” DFP spokesperson said. “Malik has said it in Pakistan and again in Delhi hat he is firm on his political struggle.” “These arrests, attacks,lifers,harassmentswill not suppress the


Jammu:AllKargilStudentAssociation Jammu (AKSAJ) today organised one day seminar on the topic “Educational Migration a Compulsion or a Choice&RoleofYouthinchanging Educational System in Kargil” at Sher-e-Kashmir Bhawan,ResidencyRoadhere. The one day seminar was a joint effort of students associations in different states of the country including Jammu, Delhi, Chandigarh and Srinagar.Asstt. Prof. Feroz Ahmad,

Asstt. Prof. Amjad Hussain, ZEO Mr. Ali, Social Activist Sajjad Kargili, Senior Educationalist Master Qasim Goma, Mr Hassan Captain were present on this ccasion appreciate

examine the issue. He said continuing the law to operate in the changed circumstances when the militancy is substantiallyreducedandpeoplehaveoverwhelmingly participated in democratic process is a hurdle in complete normalcy and a set back to peace process. "J&K cannot be eternally governed through black laws if the region has to come out of its painful history of discord and destabilisation" Mufti said. Mufti said that while it was undeniable that the Kashmir issue had to be resolved amicably to achieve lasting peace, the reversal of that process after the present government took over is partly the result of oppression and misgovernance inflicted on people. He said the level of disaffection among the people only rose

during the last four years and the arrogant attitude of government added fuel to the fires caused by a series of atrocities committed by its forces. Terming the latest suggestion of using Army in controlling unrest among people as a serious setback to

Srinagar: After remaining closed for three months on account of winter vacation, schoolsinKashmirValleyare expectedtoreopenaspertheir scheduletomorrowasnostrike has been called by separatist organisations on the day. Anofficialoftheschooleducation department said there will be no extension in the vacations as the weather in the Valley has improved significantlyoverthepast10days. Schools in the State are close in December every year for winter vacations and reopen on March 1 next year. Howeverthisyear,thereopening got delayed as the authorities decided to extend the vacations by

Healthy J&K is my mission: Omar

Majlis announces Azad lists Central initiatives for modern health facilities 6-day protest calendar

Jammu: Chief Minister, Omar Abdullah and Union Minister for Health and MedicalEducation,GhulamNabiAzadSunday underlined modern health facilities significantly important for development of

AKSAJ organised seminar at Sher-e-Kashmir Bhawan Murtaza Ali

Srinagar, March 10, Current News Service (CNS): Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has said the continued use of a law of emergency nature like the Armed Forces Special Powers Act(AFSPA) is against the letter and spirit of the constitution and amounts to denial of fundamental rights to life and liberty enshrined in it. Reiterating his party's stand on the revocation of the special law the party patron Mufti Muhammad Sayeed today said the very claim of our country to a democratic system suffers a blow when the people of an entire state are denied fundamental rights on the pretext of security. Mufti said he had been advocating the revocation of AFSPA since 2007 when the prime minister had on his suggestion had appointed a high powered committee to

Schools reopen today

AKSAJ for organising such kind of seminar in Jammu. Whileinteractingstudentsthey stressonqualityeducationand express their ideas on the role of students for building up nation and how to change the education system of Kargil. Speaking on the occasion Mr. Asgar Ali Yarkain, President AKSAJ stated that the aim of the seminar is to mobilise students studying in different institutions across the country on a common platform to collectivelyworkforthebetterment see on p4 of the state of

healthy and strong society. Laying foundation of Medical Collage Hospital for Sant Manjit Singh Institute of Medical Sciences and Research at Jeevan Nagar about 15 kilometres from hear,

Omar Abdullah and Ghulam Nabi Azad said that growth of medical institutes in the State especially in private sector is need of the hour. They said that such institutions help government efforts to upgrade health facilities and enhance medicare coverage.The Chief Minister in his speech said that his government has flagged health sector as one of the most important concerns in the State’s development policy and consolidation alongwith expansion received priority attention during the last 4 years. He said stress has been laid on improving healthcare facility inrural and far-flung areas by strengthening health institutions see on p4

Despite SHRC directions forces use pepper gas

Its use in residential areas dangerous: Health experts

Srinagar,Mar9(KNS):Despite clear directions from the State Human Rights Commission (SHRC) against the use of pepper gas to disperse protestors, Government has failed to control police and para military forces whoare using the “deadlypeppergasagainstprotestors inresidential areas.” Pertinent to mention that despite the SHRC banning use of pepper gas,atleast two old age persons died while as more than 30 personsincludingminorswere

shifted to hospitals after police andCRPFpersonalsusedpepper gas in downtown areas of Srinagar city and in some other districts of valley.While taking cognizance of the complaint filed by a human rights activistAhsanUntoo,theSHRC had impressed upon the authorities to refrain from use of excessive pepper gas. It was urged that other ptions be explored while maintaining the law and order. Police Chief of the State furnished the report

No strike on Monday, Tuesday; Civil curfew on Wednesday

Srinagar,Mar10(KNS):MutahidaMajliseMashawrat(MMM), a joint Council of various separatist organisations, Sunday announced fresh protest calendar for the coming week calling for a civil curfew on Wednesday.The Majlis reiterated its call for launching a campaign on social edia for demanding return of mortal remains of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru and JKLF founder Maqbool Bhat.In a statement to KNS, Majlis asked people not to observe any strike on Monday and only hold protests after Magrib prayers. There won’t beany strike on Tuesday either, but the government employees have been asked to observe one hour pen down strike raising pro freedom and demanding return of mortal remains slogans. The Majlis appealed the people to observe civil curfew on Wednesday while on Thursday Kashmiris living in foreign countries and other justice loving people have been asked to observe protests at Indian embassies and high commissions to press for the demand of return of mortal remains and to highlight the “suppression committed by Indian forces in Kashmir.”The Majlis has called for holding special prayers on Friday and to old protests after Friday see on p4

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dated 18-01-2012 wherein he see on p4 has not denied


national / international

leh times 11 march, 2013

Modi’s Gujarat model can never become a national model: Karat

patna;Attacking Narendra Modi, projectedbyasectionofBJPasapossible Prime Ministerial candidate, CPI(M) leader Prakash Karat on Sunday said Mr.Modi’sGujaratmodelofdevelopment cannot be replicated at the national level. “Modi’sGujaratmodelcanneverbecome

a national model for development,” he said, while addressing a CPI(M) ‘Aam Sabha’ in Patna. Everybody knows the truth about Mr. Modi’s Gujarat model of development, whichhasgivenprioritytobigindustrial houses at the cost of common man, dalitsandtribals,Mr.Karatsaid,adding,

Syria rebels free UN peacekeepers BEIRUT ;Syrian rebels on Saturday freed 21 U.N. peacekeepers after holding them hostage for four days, ending a sudden entanglement with the world bodythatearnedthosetryingtooustPresidentBashar Assad a flood of negative publicity.The episode is boundtopromptnewquestionsaboutU.N.operations in war-torn Syria. The peacekeepers were part of a force that has spent four decades monitoring an

the CPI(M) was not interested about mere electoral tie-ups, “but will align withpartieswhosupportouralternative growth plans.” Referring to the Food Security Bill, he alleged that the Congress-led UPA was ‘hurrying’ with it, to take benefit during the 2014 general elections and that the Left parties have raised concerns about it. “The CPI(M) will continue to fight for universal food security and the March 19 rally in New Delhi is aimed at this,” Mr. Karat said. Picking holes in the National Food Security Bill, he said the draft Bill prepared by the Congress cannot guarantee food security. Mr. Karat stressed that at least 90 per cent of the country’s population should be brought under the Food Security net against the currently estimated, 67 per cent. Claiming that unity among the Left parties was intact, he added that the March 19 rally will have representation from all Left Front parties.

Israeli-Syrian ceasefire without incident. The Filipino peacekeepers crossed from Syria to safety in Jordan on Saturday afternoon, said Mokhtar Lamani, the Damascus representative of the U.N.Arab League peace envoy to Syria. The peacekeepers were seized on Wednesday and were held in the village of Jamlah in southwestern Syria, near Jordan and the Israeli-controlled Golan Heights.TheircaptorsfromtheMartyrsoftheYarmouk Brigades initially said they would only release the hostages once Syrian troops withdrew from the area. In the days leading up to the abduction, rebels had overrun several regime checkpoints and apparently feared reprisals.On Saturday, another U.N. team headed toward Jamlah to try again, said a rebel spokesman, who spoke via Skype, insisting on anonymity for fear of reprisals.Mr. Lamani said the U.N. team was near Jamlah and was waiting for the rebels to hand over the hostages when the rebels

Suicide bomb blast kills nine Afghans during Hagel visit

KABUL: A suicide bomber blew himself up at a Defence Ministry gate in Kabul on Saturday killing nine civilians during a visit to Afghanistan by US Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel, underlining the insurgent threat as Nato troops prepare to leave. Hagel was nowhere nearthe explosion,said a spokesmanforAfghanistan’s Nato-led International Security Assistance Force (Isaf). A US defence official said Hagel was in a safe location at an Isaf facility.An Afghan Defence Ministry official said at least nine people, all civilians, were killed.Fourteen people were wounded in the attack, carried out by an insurgent on a bicycle. Roads around the ministry building, which is near the presidential palace, were closed as emergency officials cleared the area of debris and washed blood from the street. A wall surrounding the ministry was pockmarked with shrapnel. The Afghan Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack and said the ministry was the target. They said in a statement the attack “is a kind of message” for Hagel. The blast underscored the security challenges facing Afghanistan as US-led Nato forces prepare to leave the country by the end of 2014. Hagel, who arrived in Afghanistan on Friday for his first trip abroad as defense secretary, was moved from a briefing room at a Nato base to a more secure location after the blast, a US official said.The explosion was audible during a briefing for reporters travelling with Hagel. After the blast, the defence secretary flew to Bagram Air Base near Kabul for closed-door meetings with commanders.Hagel is due to hold talks with President Hamid Karzai, whose recent orders to curtail US military activity highlights an often tense relationship with the 66,000 American forces here.The decorated Vietnam war veteran is seeking to make his own assessment of America’s longest war as it enters its final stretch.Hagel is making his first trip to Afghanistan since a mid-2008 visit with then-Senator Barack Obama during Obama’s campaign for the presidency.

Dozens of houses torched as mob attacks Lahore Christian locality LAHORE: An enraged mob torched dozens of houses located in a Christian-dominated neighbourhood of Lahore on Saturday, DawnNews reported. The mob attacked the houses in Joseph Colony in Badami Bagh police precincts in the provincial capital following allegations of blasphemy against a Christian man. The man was booked under Section 295-C of the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC).It appeared that the man had been falsely accused of blasphemy but the police was forced to register a case to placate the mob, a local police official said.Speaking to a private television channel, Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah said the accused man was in police custody.Sanaullah said all those involved in the arson would be arrested, adding that his government would try to rehabilitate the affected Christian families.Blasphemy is an extremely sensitive subject in Pakistan – a nation of 180 million people, 97 per cent of whom are Muslims, and those convicted of defaming Islam or desecrating the Quran can face life imprisonment or even the death penalty.

Mr. Karat said that a delegation of Left parties had met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on February 26 with the demand to do away with APL and BPL categories in PDS and make subsidised ration available to everybody. “But the PM talked of providing low priced ration to only 67 per cent of the population,”hesaid,adding,theCPI(M) hasstrongreservationswiththepresent form of the Land Acquisition Bill and favoured a legislation, which paid attention to farmers’ interests. Subhashini Ali, former CPI(M) parliamentarian alleged, “both the CongressandtheBJParebusypromoting corruption.” The CPI(M) leaders also condemned the police lathicharge on agitating contractual teachers in Bihar. Biman Bose, West Bengal Left Front chairman and Joginder Sharma, the party’s Central Committee member were present at the meeting to drum up support for the party’s March 19 rally in New Delhi.

changedtheirmindsandinsteaddrovethepeacekeepers to the Jordanian border.“We don’t know why (the rebels changed the plan), and there were lots of talks on this issue,” he said. “We were surprised when we got the news through a TV station that they had reached Jordan.”Many rebel groups operate independently,despiteeffortsbytheSyrianopposition tounifythefightersunderonecommand.Theabduction appeared to have been such a local initiative, and leaders of the political opposition repeatedly urged the Jamlah rebels tOn Friday, U.S. State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland warned the rebels that holding the peacekeepers “is not good for them, it’s not good for their reputation.”The peacekeepers are part of a U.N. monitoring mission known as UNDOF. It was set up in 1974, seven years after Israel captured the plateau and a year after it managed to push back Syrian troops trying to recapture the territory in another regional war.

US drone strike kills 2 in Pakistan

ISLAMABAD:AUSdronetargetedacompound in the restive North Waziristan tribal region of Pakistan on Sunday, killing at least two persons, security officials said. TheCIA-operatedspyplanetargetedacompound in Muhammad Khel village in Datta Khel area, which has witnessed numerous drone strikes. US officials describe North Waziristan Agency asasafehavenforTalibanandal-Qaidaelements. The compound was destroyed when the drone

fired two missiles at it, security officials were quoted as saying by TV news channels. Two persons were killed in the attack. Local residents gathered in the area and began removing the debris. The US has persisted with its drone campaign in the tribal belt despite Pakistan describing the attacks as counter-productive and a violation of its sovereignty. This was the first drone strike in March. US officials recently denied reports that the CIA had carried out two strikes in February while the Pakistan Army rejected suggestions that it had tried to pass off two attacks on militants in the tribal areas as US drone strikes. In January, over 40 militants were killed in drone strikes in North and South Waziristan. Warlord Mullah Nazir Wazir was killed in a drone strike in South Waziristan in January.

Rehman Malik urges nation to unite against terrorism SIALKOT: Interior Minister RehmanMalikurgedthenation on Saturday to unite against terrorism and militancy. Hewasaddressingparticipants ofaninaugurationceremonyof a newly established passport officeattheSialkotChamberof CommerceandIndustry(SCCI). The minister said that the government had managed to “control terrorism to a great

extent” in Quetta and that the situation“wasimprovingallover PakistanexceptKarachi”.Later, talkingtomediarepresentatives at the SCCI, Malik said that the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) governmentwastakingeffective measurestosecurethelivesand properties of people across the country. He added that it was also the national obligation of all powers in the state to come

forward and play their role in eliminating terrorism and militancy. The minister said the PPP was doing everything in the larger nationalinterestandwouldnever compromiseonthis.Heassured thattheenergycrisiswould‘soon be over’ as the country would becomeself-sufficientinenergy andalsobeabletoexportenergy to other countries.

‘India First’ is my definition of secularism, says Modi

WASHINGTON ;Denied a visa to visit the United States, Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday took to video conferencing route to address the Indian-American community, saying his idea of secularism is “India First”. Mr. Modi, who often faced questions over the killing of Muslims in the post-Godhra riots in 2002, did not refer to the controversial issue in his nearly an hourlong speech in Hindi. “My definition of secularism is simple: ‘India First’. Whatever you do, wherever you work, India should be the top priority for all its citizens,” he said. “Country is above all religions and ideologies,” he argued and asked people to follow the same. “I agree friends that as an Indian, as a citizen who loves India, you will also agree with my definition... We might do any work or take any decision, India should be supreme,” he said. “Nothing less than India’s wellbeing should be our goal.Andifthishappens,secularismwillautomatically run in our blood,” the Gujarat Chief Minister said. Wharton controversy Mr. Modi was denied U.S. visa on the issue of human rightsviolation.Lastweek,theWhartonIndiaEconomic Forumcancelledhiskeynoteaddresstotheprestigious annual event because of opposition from a section of professors and students of the University of Pennsylvania.But, Mr. Modi did not touch upon the

controversial Wharton issue. The event organised by the Overseas Friends of BJP was planned much in advance of the Wharton controversy. Several hundred people gathered at two places Edison in New Jersey and Chicago - to listen to Mr. Modi’s speech. In his address, Mr. Modi emphasised on skilled development of the youth - who now constitute about 65 per cent of the total population of the country -and asked the diaspora to help in holistic development of India - tourism being one of them. During his speech, the Gujarat Chief Minister though not highly critical of the UPA Government, compared the issue of budget being allotted by the Centre and byhisownGujaratGovernmentfortheskilldevelopment of the youth of the country. “This shows the priorities of the two governments,” he said. “Iamnotusingthisplatformtocriticiseanygovernment, but want to keep before you some of the facts,” he said. “Development, a panacea for all ills” InvokingSwamiVivekanandaandyouthinhisspeech,

Mr. Modi said “development” is the key to all the problems of the country. Highlightingthedevelopmentmodelofhisgovernment, because of which he has been re-elected time and again, Mr. Modi said Gujarat today is a “ray of hope” in this “era of darkness” in the country. Modi also used the occasion to sell brand Gujarat and India as a tourism destination. He urged the large Indian diaspora to convince foreigners to visit India as tourists. Once they start coming to India, it will give a big boosttothecountry’stourismindustryandstrengthen the economy. In particular, he urged, the hotel and motels association of the US, which is dominated by the Gujarati-origin people, to show India on the television sets of their rooms. “This would be your big service to India. It is not always necessary to invest in India or send dollars, motivating people to travel to India is also another way of service,” he said. H R Shah, CEO of T V Asia claimed that his address was seen live by several million people across the globe.

Kashmiri Pandits Seek Annulment of Article 370

Explosion kills Five in Peshawar mosque PESHAWAR: At least five people were killed and 29 others injured in an explosion inside a mosque in the northwestern city of Peshawar on Saturday, Chief Executive of the Lady Reading Hospital Dr Arshad Javed told reporters. Earlier however, SP Peshawar city Khalid Hamdani had said six people were killed in the explosions and 28 others were injured. The blast took place inside the Chishtia Hanafia Ganj Ali Khan mosque near the city’s Meena bazaar. The bomb was planted near the front row of the congregation and people were getting ready to pray when the blast occurred, eye witnesses said. Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat’s divisional chief, Haji Tariq Haideri, said Qazi Mohallah Ganj Gate, Muhammad Ilyas, had also died in the blast. Four to five kilograms of explosives were used in the remote-controlled bomb blast, Bomb Disposal Unit in-charge AIG Shafqat Malik said. District Coordination Officer Peshawar Muhammad JavedtoldDawn.comfourdeathshadbeenconfirmed while 29 others were injured, out of which three were in critical conditions.He said the bomb was planted beside the prayer leader and was detonated at about 1:15pm.Condemning the incident, Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan spokesman Eshanullah Ehsan said the TTP was opposed to attacks on public places and

gatherings.The blast badly shattered the walls of the mosque and the fans and other electronic equipment was reduced to rubble.Peshawar,the capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, has been the site of several terrorist attacks in recent months. The city is surrounded by tribal regions where Al

Qaeda and Pakistani Taliban militants are said to have hideouts.The Pakistani military has carried out severaloperationsinthearea,butintermittentterrorist attacks continue. The Pakistani military has carried out several operations in the area, but intermittent terrorist attacks continue.

leh times 11 march, 2013


hom e n ews

Takes extensive tour of Srinagar city Sagar reviews Ganderbal Distt plan Stresses for judicious use of funds, achieving of tangible targets GANDERBAL, MARCH 10:- Minister for Rural Development and Panchayati Raj, Ali Mohammad Sagar today exhorted upon officers to ensure maximum benefit of developmental and welfare schemes launched by government to the people and perform duties with full zeal, enthusiasm and sense of responsibility.Mr. Sagar said that government is committed for the welfare and prosperity of the people besides accomplishing better economic status of the State.. This was stated by the Minister while addressing a meeting of officers to review the various developmental activities being executed in Ganderbal District here today. The Minister was apprised by the District Development Commissioner Ganderbal, Mr. Itrat Hussain that against the approved allocation of RS 69 crores an amount of Rs 44 crores stands spent upto ending February which constitutes 77% and was assured that 98% of target will be achieved by the end of current fiscal year. On the occasion various other projects being executed under State sector in the Ganderbal were also discussed.Mr. Sagar asked about the status of 200 bed district hospital under construction at an estimated cost of Rs 52 crores. The Minister enjoined upon the executing agencies

to speed up the pace of work on the construction so that people of area can avail better healthcare facility at their doorstep besides reducing the rush in upper reach hospitals.Mr. Sagar also enjoined upon district administration for speedy execution of under construction Bus yard at Ganderbal which is being constructed at the cost of Rs 19.41crores.Mr. Sagar impressed upon district administration to speed up the process of construction of 2-lane road from Zakoora to Wayil on priority. The Minister was informed that Shadipora and Gund Roshan bridges would be thrown open for public by April-May this year. The Minister was informed that under pilot project 96 water supply schemes at the cost of 3.50 crores have been taken up out of which 45 schemes

have been commissioned fully.Mr. Sagar directed the concerned officers to take out the rest of schemes within stipulated time.The Minister directed district administration to provide better health care facilities and adequate drinking water facility besides supply of electricity as per schedule in the district. Later, Mr Sagar took extensive tour of Srinagar City and took stock of various ongoing developmental works being executed for the welfare of people in the Srinagar.The Minister visited various areas of Srinagar including Rainawari, Mughal Mohalla, Miskeen Bagh, Raiteng, Dolat Abaad and other adjoining areasWhile interacting with the people Mr. Sagar said that government is committed for the peace, prosperity and progress of the State.

Seminar on "Gender Justice and Responsive Governance” Dr Shehnaz Ganai speaks on empowerment and role of J&K Women New Delhi: India Region of Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians (CWP) organised a seminar tiltled "Gender Justice and Responsive Governance", here in which newly elected women member of Jammu and Kashmir Legislative Council Dr Shehnaz Ganai also participated. The Seminar was inaugurated by Lok Sabha Speaker, Mrs Meira kumar. Women Members of Parliament and Women Members of each State Legislature, Experts and NGOs participated in the seminar. Speaking on the occasion Dr Shenaz Ganai highlighted the historic and visionary role of Jammu and Kashmirs tallest leader Late Sheikh Mohamad Abdullah who realising the importance of empowerment of women had some 70 years back added a chapter to focus on the issue in the Naya Kashmir Document. It was an attempt, first of its kind at that point of time in the whole subcontinent, where the focus was laid on the empowerment of the women, she addedShe informed the parliamentarians that for the empowerment of women State Government has taken bold steps and constituted a state mission authority under the Chairmanship of Chief Minister to review various Central and State Government Schemes and monitor progress regarding social empowerment of the women, besides having the independent State commission for women in the state. Saying that best way to empower women is to change the mind set in homes, she said women issues range from as trivial as giving them nutritive diet where women mostly get whatever is left after male members have

eaten their meals, to giving them scope of professional education, allowing them to have a career of their choice to allowing them to choose the groom of their choice.She said Jammu and Kashmir State has suffered a lot and highlighted the issues of thousands of Widows and half widows, who have lost their husbands to Militants, Surrendered Militants and security forces during past 24 yrs of militancy. She said women in J&K are doing excellent job in police and anti militancy work. She said that emphasis should be laid for involving more women in Gram Sabhas for spreading awareness for empowerment of women at grass root level.

Sham dedicates Rs. 20 lakh Mir Distributes Incentive Kits under Vegetable Initiative Panchayat Ghar to people at Rajwal launches Kitchen Garden Scheme for Srinagar City

SRINAGAR, MARCH 10- Minister For Agriculture Ghulam Hassan Mir said that for promotion of Kitchen Garden Scheme, 60 hectares of land would be covered under Kitchen Garden Scheme in the Srinagar city under which 2000 Persons would benefitted by launching the Scheme. The Minister was addressing at a seed distribution function organised by Directorate of Agriculture Department here today. The programme was initiated today

with distribution of Seed Kit of Radish, Beans, Sag, Seedlings of Knol Khol, Cauliflower, Tool Kits comprising of hand-hoe and Khurpa, Vermi Compost bags and vegetable calendar indicating package practices of various vegetables among the registered beneficiaries. The schedule for distribution has already been notified and accordingly incentives were distributed by Minister for Agriculture Ghulam Hassan Mir today at Lalmandi Srinagar.On this occasion

Peerzada visits Shahdara Sharief, takes stock of its working

JAMMU, MARCH 10: Minister for Haj, Auqaf and Floriculture Peerzada Mohammad Sayeed today visited Baba Ghulam Shah Budshah Shrine (Shahdara Sherief) Rajouri and took stock of its functioning. The Minister went round the premises of the Shrine and inspected various structures being erected for the facilities of the devotees in the Shrine. Issuing on-the-spot instructions to the executing agencies for accelerating the pace of construction work, Peerzada asked

Minister said that this unique initiative, first of its kind in the state, aims at promoting organic vegetable growing in the available land within people living in Srinagar city. He said that scheme will increase the safe and good quality vegetable production level in Srinagar city and make the local vegetable selfreliant. He advised people to coordinate with Agriculture Department to make kitchen garden scheme successful. Mir said that Kashmir valley is suitable climatic conditions for vegetable crops.He stressed upon the officers of the Department to replicate scheme in all the major towns of the valley. Mir said that Governments’ thrust is to decrease the cost production in Agriculture by way of introduction of quality hybrid seeds and technological innovations.Director Agriculture Kashmir Dr. Farooq Ahmad Lone said that use of new technologies and natural resources would not only help in increase vegetable production but also reduce labour component drastically. He said that people of Srinagar have shown good response towards kitchen gardening and appreciated the efforts of Agriculture Department in this regard.

them to complete the projects within the stipulated time frame. He asked them to use quality material while strictly adhering to specifications and use funds judiciously.The Minister was apprised that besides kind offering, the Shrine receives annual income to the tune of Rs. 5 crore which is being utilized for the benefits and welfare of the devotees by organizing langars and raising infrastructure of the Shrine. He was informed that out of the total income of Shrine, the shrine also contributes in the expenditure of BGSB University and one school being run in the area. The Minister also paid obeisance at the Shrine and prayed for peace and prosperity for the people of the State. On the occasion Local residents also called on the Minister and apprised him about their problems. They presented a charter of demands including construction of additional shed within the premises of Shrine, expansion of road connectivity to the adjoining areas and engagement of locals in BGSB University whose land was acquired for raising infrastructure of Shrine and University.

AKHNOOR, MARCH 10-Moving another step forward in the direction of empowerment to Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs), Minister for PHE, Irrigation & Flood Control, Mr. Sham Lal Sharma today dedicated a new model Panchayat Ghar to the people at village Rajwal, near here. The Panchayat Ghar has been constructed at an estimated cost of Rs. 20 lakh by the Rural Development Department under 13th Finance Commission and MG NREGA. The complex comprises of 4 rooms, one conference hall, one computer room and facility of public utility. Speaking on the occasion, the Minister said that Government was committed to strengthen the PRIs with all basic facilities and construction of Panchayat Ghars in each Panchayat is the first and paramount requirement for the smooth functioning. He said maximum panchayats have their own Panchayat Ghar buildings and efforts are afoot to cover all panchayats with this facility. Referring to the empowerment of PRIs, the Minister said that as a baby step, the Government has sanctioned remunerations for the Panchayat functionaries for the first time and gradually they will get more powers after

necessary amendments in the existing laws. He said Government was fully conscience about the role of PRIs and they will get facilities as per their mandate. He asked them to discharge their duties honestly and dedication and fulfill the expectations of the masses who have voted them. He asked them to do justice with all sections of the society and take all stakeholders into confidence. Responding to the demands of locals, the Minister said that a deep drilling tube-well to augment the water scarcity in the area will be examined on priority. He also assured that provision of irrigation tube-well will be kept in the next year’s plan. He also assured to address all outstanding problems

of the area in a phased manner. He asked the people to maintain unity and extend full support to the Government to ensure all round development. Block development Officer, Akhnoor, Mr. Deepak Dubey conducted the proceedings of the function. He apprised that Panchayat Ghar has specious accommodation for Panchayat functionaries and adequate provision for holding meetings. He also gave resume of development activities which are underway in the area. He also highlighted the government schemes and asked the people to avail benefits of these schemes.A large number of Sarpanchs/ Panchs and local people, besides sectoral officers of different departments were present on the occasion.

Peace pre-requisite for making JK a model State: Bhalla

JAMMU, MARCH 10-Minister for Housing, Horticulture and Culture Mr.Raman Bhalla has said that peace is pre-requisite for making Jammu and Kashmir a model State of the country adding that people’s cooperation is vital in this regard. The Minister said this while interacting with the people of Lower Gaddigarh, Digiana and Digiana Camp after assessing the development related problems of the people, here

today.During the tour, Mr. Bhalla called upon the people not to pay heed to the nefarious designs of those who mislead people by false slogans to meet their personal interests. He asked the people to extend their whole hearted cooperation to the Government for maintaining peace and prosperity in the State. The Minister said Government is committed to provide all basic amenities to the inhabitants of urban

basties like adequate drinking water, electricity, road connectivity, education, healthcare besides better lanes and drains, adding that for this purpose, Government has provided liberal funding for developing all basties on modern lines. Mr. Bhalla asked the Jammu Municipal Corporation to immediately start the construction work of lanes and drains of the areas, for which Government has earmarked Rs. 31 lakh. He called upon the people to protect public property in the localities. He appealed them not to put debris in lanes adding that such practices create hindrance to the executing agencies in completing the projects. For improving water supply in the localities, the Minister asked the PHE to lay water supply pipes in the drinking water scarcity areas. He asked JMC to immediately depute a team for removing the garbage from local nallah.Regarding restoring breached

portions of nallah, Mr. Bhalla asked the Urban Environmental Engineering Department (UEED) to start the works so that the people do not face any inconvenience during rainy season. Listing the measures taken by the Government in Lower Gaddigarh area, the Minister said Government has approved Rs. 1.53 crore for construction of cremation ground near Rohi Morh. He said Government has earmarked Rs. 1.40 crore for construction of Revenue Complex in the area. He informed that Government has earmarked Rs. 1.50 crore for construction of multipurpose community hall near Kanshupuram ashram adding that after its completion, local residents can arrange their social as well as religious functions there on nominal fee. He said Government has also earmarked Rs. 3.17 crore for construction of two-storey Primary Health Centre at Lower Gaddigarh.


Baqi yat

LEH TIMES 11 MarcH, 2013

Continued from Page Ist-------------

Success oramoment.Firstthefoundationismadeandthenwe subsequently go ahead to create an edifice,” Khurshid, who officiated as the chief guest at the Raising Day celebrations of paramilitary CISF here, said. Hewasaskediftherewasanyprogressinbilateralissues after he met the Pakistan Prime Minister in Jaipur yesterday. Khurshid maintained that the visit of the Pakistani Prime Minister was “not an official” trip and it was a courtesy extended by the Indian government when Ashraf desired to visit the Sufi shrine in Ajmer along with his family.“It is courtesy that one is allowed to go tohisplaceofprayerforthepeaceofthesoulandmind… SimilarlywhenpeoplefromIndiawanttovisitagurudwara for pilgrimage in Pakistan that is a courtesy,” he said.Khurshid,whoflewinanIAFhelicoptertotheCISF baseinGhaziabad’sIndirapuramfor theevent,said he wouldnotbeabletogiveatimeframeastowhenofficial talks between the two nations could take place in the future. DuringhisvisittoIndiayesterday,Ashrafofferedprayers at the dargah of Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti in Ajmer and met Khurshid who had hosted lunch for him in Jaipur.


on January 15 following heightened tension along the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir. The two countries had agreed to operationalise the group tourist visa facility to be offered to each other’s citizens from March 15 but the move may be put on hold as there is no improvement in bilateral relations. “The decision has to be taken at the highest level. So far, we have no clarity whether the group visa facility will be operationalised on March 15 or not though we are preparing for it along with launching of the visa on arrival for Pakistani senior citizen,” a senior Home Ministry official said. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had on Wednesday said the barbaric killing of Indian soldiers in Kashmirhadcastashadowonbilateralrelationsand asked Pakistan to create a conducive environment to take the normalisation process forward. Singhhadsaidhewasyettoseeany“tangibleprogress” in dismantling of terror infrastructure in Pakistan and bringing to justice the perpetrators of the Mumbai terror attacks. According to the visa pact, group tourist visa would be offered for a period of 30 days to tourists travelling in groups with not less than 10 members and not morethan50members,organisedbyapprovedtour operators or travel agents. The visa on arrival for Pakistani nationals above 65 years was supposed to start at the Attari Integrated Check Post. ThenewvisaagreementbetweenIndiaandPakistan was signed in September last year to ease crossbordertravelaspartofanumberofConfidenceBuilding Measures (CBMs). Someclausesoftherelaxedvisaregimelikemultipleentry and reporting-free visas for businessmen and allowing them to travel to five cities instead of the earlier three were operationalised when Pakistan’s Interior Minister Rehman Malik visited New Delhi in December 2012.


aspirations of the people of the valley and the pro-freedom leaders. Ifthesearrestandattackswouldhavechangedanything thenitwouldhavehappenedbefore,butthathaschanged nothingandwillnotchangeinfuture,”saidDFPSpokesman. “The whole Kashmiri nation is fighting for the

return of the mortal remainsofAfzalGuruandMuhammadMaqboolBhat and will not stop till their mortal remains are returned to their family members,”spokesperson added.


process of normalisation, Mufti said any civilian government having to resort to it is not worth the representative character it claims. “Can there be a more profound evidence of a government’s failure” he asked. The claim of such a government of trying to lift AFSPA is no more than another hollow slogan ofnationalconferencethathaslivedoffsuchgimmicks for most part of their history, he added. Mufti said it was unfortunate that this government had lost its way on all fronts including governance, developmentandpeople’ssecurity.“Thegovernment is trying to terrorise people into silence and in attempting that all norms of decency have been violated” he said. Mufti said thousands of youth have been framed in false cases and currently a fresh wave of arrests has seenhundredsmoreinjailsincludingteenagedchildren. He said there were reports that parents were being arrested and tortured to ensure ‘good conduct of their sons’. The use of cruel methods of crowd control had resulted in hundreds getting effected seriously.“Thisgovernmenthasapartfromdemonising an entire generation of youth created a new industry of crowd control which is exclusive to J&K. In other parts of the country governments are taken to task for minor aberrations of law and order machinery but is our state pepper bombs and pellet guns are projected as a mercy because they don’t kill instantly” Mufti said. Calling for engagement of people in a democratic manner, Mufti said all strong arm tactics have only short term impact. By capitulating on major issues the state government has failed to safeguard the interests and dignity of the state and it has reduced itself to a scavenging job, but government of India cannot escape its primary duty towards the people ofthestatewithoutfurthercomplicatingtheproblems. He said unless the the democratic aspirations of the people which they repeatedly expressed since 2002 are reciprocated in ample measure Kashmir will continue to simmer and suffer. “Removal of AFSPA and complete restoration of democratic institutions and spirit are the first essential steps in resolution of the problem”he stressed. Situation remained peaceful in Kashmir stray incidents of stone pelting in North Kashmir Srinagar, March 10, Current News Service (CNS): Situation all across Kashmir remained peaceful on Sunday, however, in North Kashmir’s Handwara townscoresofwomenappearedinmarketdemandingtheimmediatereleaseofyouth.AccordingtoCNS reporter, hundreds of people joined women processionandsomeoftheyouthpeltedstonesonthepolice and CRPF personnel deployed on roads. Men in uniform resorted to tear gas shelling and soon panic gripped the whole town. Streets wore a deserted look and all the shops got closed while the traffic on the roads disappeared instantly. When contacted, Superintendent of Police Handwara, Choudri Mohammad Aslam told CNS that police had arrested four youth and they were lodged in Kralgund police station.“Afterquestioningtheseyouthwerereleased. We have arrested two more boys who are allegedly involved in stone pelting and they are being questioned,” he said. To protests against arrests, intense protests were reported from Beerwah Town, Budgam in Central Kashmir.TheprotestersshoutingantiIndiaprotests engaged police in stone pelting, to which police resorted to tear gas shelling and lathi charge.The town observed shutdown after 2pm and the streets presented deserted look. CompleteshutdownwasobservedbypeopleinBandipora and Baramullah against the arrest of youth. CRPF personnel restricted the movement of people

Dr Manohar holds public grievance camp at Bohra Says Panchayats giving new impetus to development announces over 26 Lakhs for development works

KATHUA, MARCH 10:- Asserting that democratic decentralization through the Panchayati Raj Institutions has been instrumental in giving new directiontothedevelopmentofvillages.Ministerof stateforfisheries,cooperatives, finance and planning Dr Manohar Lal Sharma while addressing public grievance camp at village Bohra in Kathua said that through the coming up of functionalPRIs,paceofdevelopmenthasgained momentum.After hearing patiently the problems and demands of the inhabitants of Bohra , Juthana and adjoining panchayats, Dr Sharma assured redressal of their genuine demands. He said Government has put in place various schemes and programme for far off areas to

connect andequiptheseareaswithbasicamenities. He called upon the people to pay their role in participatory development by creating assets withintheirareasthroughMGNREGA.Respondingtothedemandsofthepeople,DrManoharLal Sharmasaid21AganwariCentreshasbeenopened inBohraandJuthanapanchayatsinrecentyears. He said three water schemes are already in place tocaterthewaterneedofthepeople.Hesaidroad works taken up under PMGSY and NABARD will solve the connectivity problem of the people to the great extent. He assured that the long pendency of pension cases of widow, handicapped and old age will be cleared up in one go in this budget.He announced 6 lakhs under CDF for six wards of Bohra panchayat for development works. He also announced 34 electric poles for the area under CDF. Dr Manohar Lal Sharma also announced 20 lakh for Lahri-Ted road.Dr Sharma directed the Assistant Commisioner (dev) Kathua to clear up pending MGNREGA payments. He also directed him to issue 100 crates each to Bohra and Juthana Panchayats.Among others ADDC Kathua, Ajay Singh Jamwal, SSP Kathua Arun Goel, and other district and tehsil level officers were also present in the camp.

in North Kashmir’s Baramullah district and even didn’t allow the movement of ambulances on the roads. (CNS)


two weeks due to weather conditions. Earliertherewereapprehensionsthattheoutfitscould call for a strike on the day the schools are scheduled to open. HowevertheMajlisMashawarat,anamalgamationof severalseparatistgroupsseekinghandingoverofmortalremainsofMohammadAfzalGuruandMohammad MaqboolBhattotheirfamilies,hassaidtherewillbeno strike tomorrow


the harmful effect of excessive use of pepper gas and has not dealt with the allegations in respect of harmful effect of pepper gas. “After considering the fresh material placed on record, statutory dutiesiscastontheCommissiontoprotect,safeguard life, liberty and dignity of the citizens of the state and cannot be mute spectator.State is duty bound under constitutionandlawtoprotectthelivesofthecitizens and in no case are at liberty or have license to adopt such measures which would endanger the health of itssubjectsinthenameofmaintaininglawandorder,” SHRCmember RafiqFidaobservedintheorderHospital sources admitted that many people including minors wereadversely affected by pepper gas.More than a dozen children fell unconscious during this week in the Srinagardowntownarea.AishadaughterofMohammad Latief and Aaliaboth from downtown fell unconsciousafterpeppergaswasusedintheirlocalities to disperse the protestors.“Old aged people, women and children often suffocate and have toremain outside in the air. Use of pepper gas have made our liveshell,”inhabitantsofdowntowntoldKNS.People inPulwama,Baramullaandsomeotherplacesblamed thatduringprotestsCRPFandpoliceusepepperguns which adversely affects theirhealth.Talking to KNS Auqaf Committee Pulwama spokesman Bashir Aazim said,“We have informed authorities to stop the use of pepper gunsimmediately, otherwise we will launch district-wide agitation.”Pertinently, two civiliansAbdulRashidSheikhofQutab-ud-DinPora, Aali Kadal, Srinagar died due to the inhaling of pepper gas used bythe security forces J&K Police in the vicinity on February 17. Another person Mohammad Yousuf Sofi son of late Ali Mohammad of Batmaloo diedon February 20 due to use of pepper gas.Health experts speak: Useofpeppergasintheresidentialareasisdangerous and isresponsible for the various health risks even theriskofdeathisnotruledoutbyhealthexperts.“Closing ofeyes,disconcertingsensationoftheeyelidsbubbling andboiling, an instant sensation of the restriction of the airways and the general feeling of sudden and intense, searing pain the face, noseand throat and coughing almost always follows the initial spray”, asenior medico told KNS.“Thedurationofitseffectsdependsonthestrength of the spray butthe average full effects around thirty to forty minutes, withdiminished effects lasting for hours”,headded.Healthexpertssaythatpepperspray are far more severe, includingtemporary blindness whichlastsfrom15-30minutes,aburningsensation of the skin which lasts from 45 to 60 minutes, upper bodyspasms which force a person to bend forward and uncontrollablecoughing making it difficult to breathe or speak for between 3 to 15minutes. They said that it can cause life risk to the asthma patients and to children, adding, “It could cause abortion to pregnant woman,”they warned.Deputy Commissioner Srinagar refused to comment o the issue, saying,“I’m in a meeting and cannot leave it midway to comment on the issue.”(KNS)


prayersledbyconcernedImams.Malestudentshave beenaskedtoholdprotestdemonstrationonSaturday in schools, colleges and universities.“By way of such a protest, it will be conveyed to the whole world that that Shaheed Afzal Guru was murdered in Delhi’s Tihar Jail in a brutal and unjust manner while his family was not even allowed to see him for one last time. It will convey that even after being murdered, that the bodies of Afzal and Bhat have been kept underdetentionandthattheirbodieswerenothanded over to the heirs”, the spokesman of the Majlis said. He denounced the restrictions and curfew imposed by the government andvowed that New Delhi has to return the mortal remains of Afzal and Maqbool. (KNS)


also injured in the stone pelting besides a number of vehicles were damaged. People are protesting against the death of a youth TahirAhmadSofiinfiringallegedlybytheArmyand arrest of youths in the town for participating in the demonstrations against the killing. Situation elsewhere in the valley was normal with no report of any violence


education in the region. He also expresses grief over the recent Annual result of class 12th Board Examination of Kargil district and stressed the concerned authority totakethematterseriouslyandsortoutthefaulteither on the side of Parents, Teacher or Board Authority. Seminar was attended by hundreds of student from Kargil District. Later a questioning session was also conducted by Association in which various issue relating to the topic was take up.


and creating required infrastructure. “It is easy to built buildings and other required infrastructure in villages and difficult areas but placing of manpower to run institutions especially those in health and education sectors has been the concern in Jammu and Kashmir all along”, he said unless a good hospital equipped with necessary equipment is provided with necessary paraphernalia, doctors and specialists, its outcome and benefits to the people will not be up to the mark. “During the last four years my government has concentrated attention on this aspect and special initiativeshavebeentakenutilizingNationalRuralHealth Mission and other schemes to provide enhanced salaries and other perks to doctors and paramedics to make them serve and stay in hospitals in the rural and difficult areas”, he said adding that to reduce the pressure on city and town hospitals it is imperative to upgrade and improve the health facilities in rural areasandplacerequireddoctorsandotherstaffthere to make these health institutions fully function. “It has been observed that even doctors obtaining medical degrees under special categories and dispensations shirk to work in the areas and for the people they were given concessions for in trainings”, he said and added that the service rendered by doctors is pious and they take oath after entering the profession of serving the mankind sincerely and devotedly. He said that the mindset of making medical professional means to realize economic goals needstobechanged.“Doctorsareboundbytheoath they take for rendering best service to the mankind”, he said and asked them not to convert their holy service into commercial one. Highlightingthenecessityofgoodhealthofevery member of the society, Omar Abdullah said that creation of colleges, universities, roads, bridges and

other facilities and moving forward on road to prosperity will not be meaningful if the society is confronted with health problems and people do not enjoygoodandrobusthealth.“Itisassuchimportant thathealthservicereceiveshighestattention”,hesaid and gave details of the initiatives government has taken in this direction. He said healthy Jammu and Kashmir is his earnest mission and all efforts have been put in to achieve this goal. Expressing his congratulation to the managementoftheSantManjitSinghTrustfortakingapious initiative of developing a Medical Institute and ResearchCentrenearJammu,OmarAbdullahexpressed the hope that it would prove highly beneficial both for rendering modern health services to the people andproducingmedicalgraduatesofhighqualityand calibre. He also extended Shivratri greetings to the people on the occasion. Since the birthday of Omar Abdullah falling on March 10 coincided with the event, as such, the large gathering present on the occasion gave him hearty greetings and standing ovation for sparing time on his special day to be present with them and lay foundation on an important institute linked with the common people. In his elaborative speech on the occasion, GhulamNabiAzadpresenteddetailsofthenewinitiatives taken by his Ministry during the last three and a half years to upgrade health facilities in the country. He referred to the amendments made to the Medical Council Act to encourage growth of private sector in the medical field. Azadsaidthatvariousrestrictionswereremoved andprovisionsmadesoftforprivateplayerstoinvest inmedicaleducationsectorandexpandthemodern health facility all across the country. He said 60 percent medical institutes are in private sector in India and most of these are in Maharashtra and Southern States.“Wearetryingandfacilitatinggrowthofthese institutionsinotherareaslikeJammuandKashmir, UP,BiharandOdisha”,hesaidandgavedetailsofthe concessionsbeingprovidedbytheUnionGovernment in this regard. Underliningtheimportanceofqualifiedfaculties in medical institutions, the Union Minister said that hehasenhancedtheretirementagelimitofteaching faculty in AIIMS and other Central Medical Institutions in the Country. “I have written to all the Chief Ministers in this regard urging them to take similar steps so that faculties in the State-run institutions remain intact”, he maintained. The Union Health Minister also referred to the Central scheme introduced for protecting health of pregnant and infants. He said the scheme is under implementation throughout the Country and has shownpositiveresultstoreducethemortalityofnew bornchildrenandpregnantwomen.Hesaidpregnant womenarebeingprovidedfreetransport,medicine, foodandtreatmentunderthisschemeingovernment hospitals and each pregnant from villages after delivery gets Rs. 1400 cash while the pregnant women from cities get Rs. 1000 each. Azad said that his Ministry is extending special grants and help to Jammu and Kashmir to help upgrade health and medical education sector and extend its reach to all areas in the State. He said he has recently sanctioned grants for 200 ambulances for Jammu and Kashmir. Minister for Housing and Horticulture who is also MLA of the area in his speech lauded the initiative taken by Sant Manjit Singh Trust to establish a MedicalCollegeandHospitalintheareaaddingthat an Engineering College is already being run by the Trust there. He said the educational institutions and hospitals extend benefits to entire society rendering mostimportantservicetothepeople.Hesaidgrowth of these institutions in private sector indicates the positive trend in a vibrant society. Deputy Chief Minister, Tara Chand, Mahant Manjit Singh, various Ministers from State Council ofMinisters,ParliamentMember,Legislators,Panchayat Members,formerMinistersandSeniorCitizenswere present on the occasion.Mahant Manjit Singh presented vote of thanks while former Minister, S. Ranjit Singh welcome the dignitaries on the occasion.

IG CRPF refutes Div Com’s claims “We follow our SOP in letter and spirit”

Srinagar,Mar9(KNS): Inspector General Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) V S Yadav Sunday denied allegations regarding the involvement of its personnelinanysortofransacking incident during the prevailing situation of Kashmir.In response to news report in which Divisional Commissioner AsgarSamoonhadstatedthatCRP should follow the standard operating procedures (SOP) and had appealed the people to contact administrationin case of any excess by paramilitary forces,

the IG told KNS they didnot ransack any home or religious places.“Theseareallfalsereports wehavebeenfollowingourSOP in letterand spirit, I don’t know about which (SOP) Divisional Commissioner hastalked,” he said.Yadavsaidabout350CRPF personnelwereinjuredand130 vehiclesdamagedinthelastfew daysofprotests“asourmentried maximum restraint on their part.”“What more can we do?” he asked.The IG claimed that strict instructions have been given to forces notto open fire, “till their own lives are in a seri-

ous threat.”Responding to another report in Kulgam Yadav said,“Fiveofourmenhavebeen severely injured, though they couldhaveopenedthefirebutinsteadtheyexhibitedwisdomby restraining themselves. There aresome elements who want to spoiltheharmonybetweenCRPF andPolice.”Ontheuseofpepper gas the IG said, “We don’t use it.”TheIGrefutedtheallegation regarding the harassment of medicalstaff but was quick to addthatambulancessometimes ferrypassengerswhichcanlead to a problem.

Salathia meets deputations “Govt. committed for welfare of people” Jammu Mar. 10 (KNS): A series of Public meetings at Rangoor Camp,Dollian, and Teli Basti in Vijaypur constituency led by Shri. SurjitSingh Slathia MLA Vijaypur and Senior VicePresident J&K National Conference. While speaking on the occasion atRangoor Camp Shri Slathia assured that the demands like

Constructionof Shamshan Ghat road, black topping of road from Rangoor Camp toBalad Post, Construction of road from Govindarh to Rangoor Campwould be taken up soon Slathia asked the people to identity the landso that the ladies bathroom could be constructed at the earliest.Laterally Slathia inaugurated construction of lanes and drains at TeliBasti which has been constructed by the rural development departmentat the estimated cost of Rs 9.50 lacs.Addressing a large gathering Slathia said.

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LEH TIMES 11 Mar, 2013

EC Agri for timely distribution of agriculture seeds to the farmers Leh: As a follow up of his recent meeting with State Agriculture Minister Ghulam Hassan Mir at Jammu, the EC AgricultureSonamDorjaytodayheldameeting with the functionaries of Agriculture Department and asked them to prepare agriculture development projects conducive for Ladakh’s climates as the State Govt. has assured to extend all possible financial as well as technical support to Leh district in this particular field.The EC also took stock of the preparatory steps for distribution of seeds to the farm-


a dv t

ers in view of fast approaching sowing season in Ladakh and directed them to ensure fulfilling the public demands qualitatively and quantitatively.The Chief Agriculture Officer apprised the EC Agricultureaboutsufficientstockingofseeds and also assured for timely distribution of seedstothe farmers of different regions. To ensure timely supply of quality potato seeds to the farmers of Leh district, Mr. Dorjey directed the Agriculture Departmentfordispatchingcertifiedpotatoseeds one truck each for all the nine blocks and

asked the agriculture officials to ensure fair distribution of seeds in presence concerned Councilors, Sarpanches and Nambardars. It is to mention that under a policy to improve the quality and production of potato farming in Leh district , LAHDC, Leh has adopted Stakmo and Saboo villages for preparation of quality potato seeds in view of the fact that the prevailing seeds of potato have gone out dated with considerable deterioration in both quality and production.

A NATIONAL PSYCHE OF FEAR IN PAKISTAN From the day that Shaheed Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto was assassinated, I have felt the escalation of the mindset of hate. Our country has been hijacked – not politically but through the psychology of hate and fear. It is obvious that those who cannot win the argument about contrasting visions for Pakistan try to intimidate others with the gun. The most recent example of this phenomenon was the armed attack on progressive activists Marvi Sirmed and Sirmed Manzoor. It was not an attack to kill but an attack to silence them. I was born and raised in a country where it was rare to be asked your religion or about your religious practices. I attended a convent school where the

nuns ensured that there was no way to tell whether a girl student was from a rich or poorer household. Our uniforms were strictly enforced and no jewellery or expensive shoes were allowed. Some scholars say that what started, very soon after the death of the Quaid-e-Azam, was the use of Islam as a political tool and was later militarised and mainstreamed by Dictator Ziaul Haq, which has now becomethetyrannisingforceinallaspects of daily life in Pakistan. Today, regardless of whether one is Sunni, Shia, Ahmadi, Christian, Hindu or Parsi, he sends his children to school worried, every day. People are careful at work placesaboutsharingtheirpersonalbeliefs.

Since 1989, 4,051 people have been killed in 2,800 incidents of sectarian terrorism up until October 2012, according to the South Asia Terrorism Portal database. Most of those were targeted killings. The majority of Pakistanis may not subscribe to it but a national psyche of fear that has been mainstreamed into every aspect of our lives has become almost overwhelming. We are constantly fed conspiracy theories so that we fear foreign powers or the beliefs of others. It is as if our sect, our ethnic group, our nation or our religion is constantly under attack and we must fear and attack the ‘other’ before being attacked ourselves. The fight to reg

Issue of PaK refugees under consideration: CM Jammu: Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on Sunday said hisgovernmentwasworking on resolving the issue of PaK refugees in Jammu and Kashmir and it has been taken up with the Centre. "The issue of refugeesisunderourconsiderationandwe have raised it with the central government also," Abdullah said on the occasion of laying the foundation stone of Sant Manjit Singh Institute of Medical Sciences and Research at Jeevan Nagar, about 15 km from here. "I hope the help which we are looking forward to from the Centre, with regard

to the one-time settlement of refugees, will be provided," he said. Earlier, Minister for Housing and Horticulture Raman Bhalla said the issue of refugees was pending since long and the government was looking to provide them assistance. Meanwhile, Abdullah also assured that Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee elections, which havenotbeenconductedsince last few years in the state, will be held soon. "A decision in this regard will soon be made by the Law and Parliamentary Affairs minister and you will be given the permission to hold the elections here," he said.

96 J&K IAS officers fail to submit property returns New Delhi: Over 1,000 including 96 IAS officersfromJ&Khavefailedtosubmittheir immovable property returns (IPRs) to the governmentwithinthestipulatedtimeframe this year. Of the total of 1,057 officers who did not submit their IPRs for 2012, a highest of 147 are from Uttar Pradesh cadre, 114 of Arunachal Pradesh-Goa-Mizoram-Union Territories (AGMUT), 100 of ManipurTripura, 96 of Jammu and Kashmir and 88ofMadhyaPradeshcadreamongothers, accordingtoDepartmentofPersonneland Training data. Suspended IAS couple Arvind and Tinoo Joshi of MP cadre are also among the list of

erring officials. Joshis, both 1979 batch officers of Madhya Pradesh cadre, made headlines after Income Tax department raided their residence in February, 2010 and allegedly unearthed assets worth over Rs 350 crore. 58 IAS officers of Karnataka cadre, 53 of AndhraPradesh,48ofPunjab,47ofOrissa, 45ofWestBengal,40ofHimachalPradesh, 35ofHaryana,25ofJharkhand,23ofAssamMeghalaya, 22 of Rajasthan, 20 of Tamil Nadu, 17 of Maharashtra, 16 of Nagaland, 14 of Gujarat, 13 of Bihar, 10 of Kerala, nine eachofUttarakhandandChhattisgarhand eight of Sikkim cadre have not given their IPRs, it said. The total sanctioned strength

of IAS is 6,217, including 1,339 promotion posts.Ofthese,4,737officersareinposition. An all-India service officer is bound to file property returns of a year by January end of the following year, failing which promotion and empanelment to senior level postings may be denied. Besides,thereare107IASofficerswhohave notsubmittedtheirIPRsfor2011.Asmany as 198 IAS officials did not give their propertydetailsfor2010."Acircularhasalready beensenttoallcadrecontrollingauthorities to inform them about timely submission of their IPRs," said an official of the DoPT, whichactsasanodalagencyforadministrative matters of the IAS officers.www

office of the ex. engineer electric M&re Division BijBehara

Short term Tender Notice NIT No;18/EDB of 2013 Dated:09-03-2013 For and on behalf of Governor of J&K State tenders duly affixed with Rs 5/-Revenue Stamps are invited from registered Electrical/self Help Groups for the below mentioned works which should reach the office of the Executive engineer Electric M&RE Division Bijbehara through Registered post/courier/speed post or by hand on or before 16-03-2013 upto 2 PM and shall be opened on the same day or any subsequent date convenient to the Ex. Engineer in presence of tenderers who wish to be present. In case the last date of receipt of tenders happens to be a holiday/ hartal, the tenders shall be received on the next working day. S No Name o f work

Approx. cost in E/M Rs ( Lacs)

Cost of tender Class` Document


Position of funds


Improvement of HT/LT network 1.50 at Herbad Ashmuqam

3000 Rs 200


10 days



Improvement of HT/LT network 1.50 at tantrapora Siligam

3000 Rs 200


10 days



Improvement of HT/LT network 0.90 at Vovdioora Adlash


Rs 100


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Tenders addressed to the Executive engineer should be accompanied with the necessary CDR pledged to the Ex. Engineer Electric Division Bijbehara.The Tender Documents containing Bill of Quantities/Rate list and other details can be had from the office of undersigned on any working day upto 15-03-2013 during working hours on cash payment (Nonrefundable) only after production of valid /renewed Registered Card, Tax Clearance Certificate, TIN No. and PAN No.

Dipk No;15213 S/dEx.Engineer Electric M&RE Division Bijbehara

leh times 11 march, 2013

Water your best drink to fight the heat

Delhi: The summer is round the corner and it`s time to check your car`s coolant level to guard against overheating. But what about your body? Doesn`t it need something specialtoadjusttotheexpectedgradualincrease in mercury over the next few weeks? It does, say nutritionists and health experts, who recommend nothing but water - in liberal quantities - to keep you properly hydrated. Water makes up about 60 percent of your body weight. Every system in your body

depends on water. For example, water flushes toxins out of vital organs, carries nutrients to your cells and provides a moist environment for ear, nose and throat tissues. Lack of water can lead to dehydration, a condition that occurs when you don`t have enough water in your body to carry out normal functions. Even mild dehydration can drain your energy and make you tired. Palliative care physician Divya Pal Singh

said: “Proper care needs to be taken of the body`s fluid requirement as the weather starts getting warmer.” “Drinking adequate amounts of water also ensuresthatcancercausingtoxinsareflushed out of the body,” he said. “Your water needs depend on many factors, including your health, how active you are and where you live. At least two-three litres of fluids daily should keep a person healthy,” he said.The doctor warned fizzy drinks or

juices aren`t the ideal replacement for water.Naturopath Gita Mehta said: “If you don`t find plain water exciting enough, try a lemonade or packaged flavoured water. This is much better than sugar-rich colas and juices that the body fails to break down fast.” “Water in any form, even the flavoured variant, delivers instant rejuvenation. It enters the blood in no time, maintaining the ideal body temperature. But the process is not as effective and fast with colas and juices,” Mehta said. Ajay Kansal, a consultant in pathology and author of “The Evolution of Gods”, said: “During the last few decades, most upwardly mobile Indians, especially youth, have adopted a peculiar habit of having meals with some drink such as sweetened juices, colas or other fizzy drinks.” “Thesedrinksinvariablycontainhighamount of calories and preservatives. In place of these fancy drinks, I would suggest water or a drink with minimal sugar and no preservatives or something with an added dose of vitamins,” he said. Parents of small children have their own setofproblems.AnjaliMadan,aDelhi-based human resource consultant, complained about her eight-year-old son refusing to drink water in adequate quantities.

Red wine pill could help protect against killer diseases

Washington: Scientists have developed a wonder pill harnessing the health-boosting power of red wine which can protect against a host of chronic killer diseases.A new study demonstrates what researchers consider conclusive evidence that the red wine compound resveratrol directly activates a protein that promotes health and longevity in animal models.What`s more, the researchers have uncovered

the molecular mechanism for this interaction, and show that a class of more potent drugs currently in clinical trials act in a similar fashion.Pharmaceutical compoundssimilartoresveratrolmaypotentiallytreat and prevent diseases related to aging in people, the authors contend.For the last decade, the science of aging has increasingly focused on sirtuins, a group of genes that are believed to protect many organisms,

Brain protein may help treat depression: Study

Los Angeles: Boosting levels of a brain protein could elevate both mood and alertness in humans, paving way for possible treatments of psychiatric disorders like depression, scientists say. Researchers at University of California - Los Angeles have measured the release of a specific peptide, a neurotransmitter called hypocretin, that greatly increased when subjects were happy but decreased when they were sad. In addition, the study measured for the first time the release of another peptide, this one calledmelaninconcentratinghormone,orMCH. Researchers found that its release was minimal in waking but greatly increased during sleep, suggesting a key role for this peptide in making humans sleepy. “The current findings explain the sleepiness of narcolepsy, as well as the depression that frequently accompanies this disorder. The findings also suggest that hypocretin deficiency may underlie depression from other causes,” said senior author Jerome Siegel. In 2000, Siegel`s team published findings showing that people suffering from narcolepsy, a neurological disorder characterised by


h e a lt h/s c i e nc e

uncontrollable periods of deep sleep, had 95 per cent fewer hypocretin nerve cells in their brains than those without the illness. Since depression is strongly associated with narcolepsy, Siegel`s lab began to explore hypocretin and its possible link to depression. In the current study, the researchers obtained their data on both hypocretin and MCH directly from the brains of eight patients who were being treated at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center for intractable epilepsy. The researchers found that hypocretin levels were not linked to arousal in general but were maximised during positive emotions, anger, social interactions and awakening. In contrast, MCH levels were maximal during sleep onset and minimal during social interactions.“These results suggest a previously unappreciated emotional specificity in the activation of arousal and sleep in humans,” Siegel said.“The findings suggest that abnormalities in the pattern of activation of these systems may contribute to a number of psychiatric disorders,” Siegel added.The study was published in the journal Nature Communications.

including mammals, against diseases of aging. Mountingevidencehasdemonstratedthatresveratrol, a compound found in the skin of grapes as well as in peanuts and berries, increases the activity of a specific sirtuin, SIRT1, that protects the body from diseases by revving up the mitochondria, a kind of cellular battery that slowly runs down as we age. By recharging the batteries, SIRT1 can have profound effects on health.Mice on resveratrol have twice the endurance and are relatively immune from effects of obesity and aging. In experiments with yeast, nematodes, bees, flies and mice, lifespan has been extended.“In the history of pharmaceuticals, there has never been a drug that binds to a protein to make it run faster in the way that resveratrol activates SIRT1,” David Sinclair, Harvard Medical School professor of genetics and senior author on the paper said.“Almost all drugs either slow or block them,” he said.ThestudyispublishedinthejournalScience.effects onhealth.Miceonresveratrolhavetwicetheendurance and are relatively immune from effects of obesity and aging. In experiments with yeast, nematodes, bees, flies and mice, lifespan has been extended.“In the history of pharmaceuticals, there has never been a drug that binds to a protein to make it run faster in the way thatresveratrolactivatesSIRT1,”DavidSinclair,Harvard MedicalSchoolprofessorofgeneticsandseniorauthor on the paper said.

“He takes just a few sips of water after meals and a session in the playground. Since I do not want to give him colas, I am confused how to ensure his regular and proper hydration,” she said. While instant sweetened, flavoured additives and lemon concentrates are some of her tested ways of drawing her son into drinking more and more water, she said it was not practical to prepare such drinks all the time. The HR professional said she was not really sure about the new breed of flavoured water, some of which even claim to carry benefits of vitamins, to improve her child`s water drinking habit. Said Steve Verma, director, Beltek Canadian Water Limited, which makes vitamin enriched water drink, Wild Water: “Our product is a natural alternative to colas and an exciting alternative to normal packaged water.” “We have focussed on tasty hydration and meeting the needs of calorie-conscious consumers,” he said. “Even children and reluctant water drinkersmaygetattractedtoournaturalflavoured water with vitamins,” he said, adding that some of the variants of Wild Water came with the benefits of Vitamins A, B and C along with electrolytes and zinc.

New forms of virulent pathogen identified Sydney: Four new forms of one of the most virulent pathogens, hantavirus, transmitted from animals to humans, have been identified by a team of researchers. Hantavirus causes flu-like symptoms which can bring on respiratory and kidney failure in humans. It usually appears as sporadic disease outbreaks such as that in 1993 in a US region bordering New Mexico, Arizona, Colorado and Utah. “Our research describes four novel hantaviruses, sampled from bats and shrews in China, which are distinct from known hantaviruses,” says study coauthor Eddie Holmes, professor and Australia Fellow at the University of Sydney, the journal Public Library of Science Pathogen reports.“Hantavirus isamajorthreattoglobalhealth, making information that adds

to our poor understanding of how it evolved and is transmitted an important contribution to fighting the disease,” adds Holmes.The finding also suggests there may be additional unrecognised hantaviruses circulating in a wide range of animalhosts,particularlybats, and that the hantaviruses frequently jump hosts, according to a Sydney statement. The new international research on hantavirus is led by researchers at the China Centre for Disease Control and Prevention to which Holmes contributed.The finding also suggests there may be additional unrecognised hantavirusescirculatingin a wide range of animal hosts, particularly bats, and that the hantaviruses frequently jump hosts, according to a Sydney statement.

Walking and running saves energy Washington: The best way toconserveenergyandreach your destination on time is toalternatebetweenwalking and running, says a study. Researchersfoundthatwhen peoplehaveneithertoomuch timenortoolittletimetoreach their destination, they alternate walking and running, whichturnsouttobethebest strategy for saving energy. Thestudyisthefirstofitskind not conducted on treadmill, anditsupportsthenotionthat thehumanbodyhasaninnate senseofhowtovaryspeedto optimizeenergywhenwe`re on the move in our natural environment,the Journal of the Royal Society Interface reports. “We don`t live our lives on a treadmill,”saidManojSrinivasan, study co-author and assistant professor of mechanicalengineeringatOhio State University. “To better understand how wemoveinoureverydaylife, and how our spontaneous movements relate to energy expenditure,wehavetostudy what people do away from the treadmill,” according to an Ohio statement. “Oncewehaveagoodenough understanding of how we naturally move to conserve energy, we can build a solid theory and apply it in practical ways - designing better shoes, or better prosthetics thatletpeoplewalkusingless energy,” added Srinivasan. In tests, 36 college students wereaskedtotraveladistance a little longer than a football field, either on pavement outdoors or inside a school hallway. Theyweregivenastopwatch, andtoldtoarriveattheirdestinationataspecifictime-not beforeandnotafter,butright on time.

Diet and exercise keys to healthy life Washington: Weight loss and active lifestyle can help to counteract the effects of obesity, a new study has suggested. Epidemiologists estimate that about 80 percent of the most common diseases are linked to severe overweight and obesity and a sedentary lifestyle. people are at an increased risk for cardiovascular diseases, vascular diseases, hypertension, diabetes and cancer. This lowers their life expectancy. The links between body weight, lifestyle and the risks of developing cancer and other chronic diseases are not yet understood in every detail. However, changes in hormonal signaling are believed to be among the culprits of these processes. “Adipose tissue produces various hormones which have a great impact on metabolism. The important ones are anti-inflammatory adiponectin, which increases the effect of insulin, and leptin, which can promote tumor cell growth,” said Prof. Dr. Cornelia

Ulrich.Do body weight and exercise also affect production of these key adipose tissue hormones? Cornelia Ulrich, departmental head at DKFZ and director of the National Center for Tumor Diseases (NCT) Heidelberg, analyzed this in a randomized controlled study with 439 overweight postmenopausalwomen(agebelow50years).Studyparticipants were divided into three “intervention groups” (diet; exercise; diet plus exercise) as well as a control group. These groups were watched intensively over a period of one year so that the results obtained are

particularly valuable. Leptin production decreased in all three intervention groups, most noticeably (up to 40 percent) in the diet plus exercise group. By contrast, adiponectin production increased most in women who were on a reduced calorie diet only.Irrespective of the type of intervention, the positive effect on hormone production was dependent on the degree of weight loss: The more kilos a study participant had lost, the more her adiponectin levels increased and the more her leptin levels decreased.

Exercise can protect kids from stress Washington: Sedentary children are more prone to stress than their active peers, according to a recent study. When they are exposed to everyday stressors, the study found sedentary children had surges of cortisol - a hormone linked to stress. The most active children had little or no increase in their cortisol levels in similar situations. “The findings suggest physical activity plays a role in mental health by buffering children from the effects of dailystressors,suchaspublicspeaking,” said the study`s lead author, Silja Martikainen, MA, of the University of Helsinki, Finland. The cross-sectional study monitored physical activity and cortisol levels in abirthcohortofeight-year-oldchildren.

The 252 participants wore accelerometer devices on their wrists to measure physical activity. Saliva samples were taken to measure cortisol levels. To

measure reactions to stress, children were assigned arithmetic and storytelling tasks. The study is the first to find a link between physical activity

and stress hormone responses in children.The children were divided into three groups - most active, intermediate and least active. The most active children`s cortisol levels were the least reactivetostressfulsituations.Themost active children exercised more vigorously and for longer periods of time than their counterparts. “Clearly, there is a link between mental and physical well-being, but the nature oftheconnectionisnotwellunderstood,” Martikainen said. “Theseresultssuggestexercisepromotes mental health by regulating the stress hormone response to stressors.” The study will be published in The Endocrine Society`s Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism (JCEM).

R lEH tIMES 11 March, 2013


For the women of India, Parliament must speak Farah naqvi

The House must ensure that the new Bill to replace the Criminal Law Ordinance consciously upholds the provisions and spirit of the Verma Committee report

A brave young woman died a brutal death in the heart of the nation’s capital. And Parliament must speak. Today. Tomorrow. Or, the day after. But speak it must. And in a unified voice of conviction and certitude, rising above the cacophony of political difference say No to violence against women. Not in mere words, howsoever strong and impassioned, but in deeds, in crafting into our statute books laws on fighting sexual violence that are overdue, that the nation demands, and that are truly just to women. After decades of slow momentum on women’s rights, India is poised on a cusp of change. It is now in the hands of parliamentarians to make that a reality. Let a voice reverberate from the halls of Parliament, sending a signal to India and to the world that our democracy is alive, that our democracy is good for women, and that this time the ramparts of patriarchy shall give. History is littered with lost opportunities for change. Let this not be one of them. Today, scores of women across India, protesting on the streets, watching from their homes, writing in their blogs, alert with angry chatter on e-groups, speaking loudly in press conferences, strategising in quiet huddles — are saying the same thing — uphold the Justice Verma Committee (JVC) Report! The task before Parliament is not simple. First there was the Criminal Law Amendment Bill

2012 (CLB), tabled in the Lok Sabha on December 4, 2012, and sent to the Parliamentary Standing Committee. The CLB 2012, crafted before the JVC was even constituted, was flawed and reactionary, flying in the face of repeated demands by women rights groups across the country. It was soundly opposed through scores of submissions to the Parliamentary Standing Committee. But even as the Standing Committee was considering its response, it was overtaken by events — the brutal gang-rape of the young woman on December 16, 2012, the constitution of the JVC on December 23, 2012, the quick submission of its report on January 23, 2013, and then, ostensibly, in response to national sentiment, in an act of haste and stealth — an Ordinance which was signed into law on February 5, 2013. Now the Parliamentary Standing Committee, which officially considered the Criminal Law (Amendment) Bill, 2012, (and the Ordinance, 2013 as well), has submitted its report. And the Government of India is poised to craft a new Bill to replace the Ordinance. Sadly, the Standing Committee report does little to push the boundaries of our collective conscience, and one only hopes that the new Bill will. While both the SC report and the Ordinance 2013 can claim to have incorporated parts of the JVC recommendations on points of law, the question Parliament must ask is, as it considers any new Bill, is: which key JVC recommendations got left out? The list of omissions is illuminating. Both the

Editorial Land lessons from Australia Australia’s recent decision to give up uranium mining on aboriginal land in Koongarra stands in sharp contrast to the Manmohan Singh government’s dithering and double-speak on the forceful acquisition of tribal lands. This also highlights Indian officialdom’s shallow and insensitive understanding of the land and life of tribal communities. The 12.5 sq km patch of land in Koongarra is one of three uranium-rich pockets within the Kakadu National Park in northern Australia. Though the park was legally protected and even inscribed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1981 for its archaeological and ethnological qualities, Koongarra remained excluded to facilitate commercial exploitation of uranium. The aboriginal communities opposed this and resisted moves to grant a mining lease to private companies. They knew that the operations would destroy their life, which is inextricably linked to the land, and the cultural landscape that nourishes them. Deferring to their wishes and foregoing a lucrative commercial deal, the Labour government in Australia recently passed legislation to protect the Koongarra land and include it in the national park. The UPA government too may claim that its decision to prevent bauxite mining in the Niyamgiri hills of Orissa reflects similar sensitivity. But nothing could be further from the truth. In the Vedanta mining case, the government, through its recently filed affidavit, told the Supreme Court that it has prohibited mining in Niyamgiri hills since it would affect the Dongria Khondh tribal’s right to worship. Behind this apparently benign reasoning lurks the crushing truth. The government has reduced the complex relationship between tribal communities and their land to that of religious beliefs, ignoring important livelihood and other cultural connections. This clever dilution will slowly pave the way for easy acquisition of other tribal lands. The government also betrayed its true intentions when it stated in the same affidavit that barring exceptional cases, it would go ahead with the forceful acquisition of forest land without the consent of gram sabhas as mandated by the rules of the Forest Rights Act. The tribal communities have been among the most vulnerable and exploited groups in India. More than 40 per cent of total land acquired so far for mining and development projects belongs to them. When the adivasis and landless poor took out a mammoth processionlastyeardemandinganendtoforcibleacquisition, the government promised to implement a people.

Ordinance 2013 and the SC Recommendations not only retain the core of impunity for sexual crimes, they actually add to it. ACCOUNTABILITY What is impunity? A simple Thesaurus search will show up the following words — license, exemption, freedom, liberty, latitude and immunity. Centuries of impunity emboldens those who commit violence. It emboldened the men who mauled a young woman’s body. Yet, the Ordinance 2013, which is today the law of the land, has created laws on sexual assault, harassment and rape in which the accused is “gender neutral,” i.e. both women and men can be accused of these crimes. Does this sound right? Can we sweep away the painful, historical and contemporary reality of masculine violence against women in India — of women, stalked and raped by men in fields, homes and streets? Yes, in custodial situations, women can be perpetrators of sexual violence — no one who has seen images of Abu Ghraib should believe otherwise. But not across the board. Given the brute nature of genderbased inequities in India, the huge imbalance of power between men and women, the realities of rape across our towns and villages, is this the law that the women of India deserve? For every complaint made against an offender, there now arises a real possibility of countercomplaints that will silence women even more than they are today. Which woman will brave the sceptical stance of the police and judiciary to seek justice when she herself stands to be


in the dock, accused of the same crime as the offender? These are the questions Parliament must ask. The SC report and Ordinance also uphold impunity of the police, keeping intact their licence to refuse to lodge FIRs, to smirk and scorn women who seek its help. The JVC report had recommended creating a new offence (166A) for public servants who disobey the law and proposing a mandatory minimum sentence.TheStanding Committee supports inclusion of this offence but says ‘no’ to a

the Standing Committee upholds? Statutory offence means any third party can threaten young people with jail-time; it means a judge must convict them, even though the couple may beg and plead and say this was not a crime; it means harassment by police in inter-caste relationships; it means a powerful tool in the hands of the wrong people. If Parliament passes a Bill that criminalises consensual sexual contact with anyone between 16-18, India’s portrait will hang in the international gallery of shame. There is more at s t a ke — will the new Bill

erring police. Parliament must demand full accountability from the public servants of this country — to ensure that they provide protection and ensure prosecution if women are violated; and Parliament must ensure that any new Bill on sexual assault and rape proposes a minimum sentence for erring public officials. AGE OF CONSENT And where will Parliament stand on age of consent? Will it stand up for the rights of the young men and women of India, who deserve the right to be young, and to not be criminalised? Or should we make them even more vulnerable to self-appointed moral guardians with medieval mindsets, to the khap panchayats, by making sexual contact with anyone between 16-18 years a statutory offence, as the Ordinance 2013 does and

reparations for victims? At the time of writing we do not know what the provisions of the Government’s new Bill will be. If it upholds the provisions and spirit of the Justice Verma Committee report, Parliamentarians must pass it into law, and as you thump your tables in approval, women outside will celebrate with you. This time, in memory of a young woman who died as no woman should, Parliament must speak for all the women of India. And this time the ramparts of patriarchy must give. (Farah Naqvi, a writer and activist, is a member of the National Advisory Council. Views expressed here are personal. E-mail:

For every complaint made against an offender, there now arises a real possibility of countercomplaints that will silence women even more than they are today. Which woman will brave the sceptical stance of the police and judiciary to seek justice when she herself stands to be in the dock, accused of the same crime as recognise the offender? These are the minimum marital sentence. So, rape? Or, questions Parliament a rap on the make it knuckles is the only obligatory on the must ask. real deterrent we offer State to provide


Our bodies, our selves NILANJANA S. ROY Until we embrace the idea of consent in all relationships, including marriage, there can be no gender equality. Its absence makes discussions on sexual abuse meaningless The man who was my abuser was a fine host, a good husband, a caring father, a respected elder whose generosity and kindness were as genuine as the fact of the abuse. These qualities were important, because they helped him conceal the abuse he carried out over a period of four years. As a much-loved older relative, a close friend of my parents, he had unrestricted access to our house, and we visited him often. It was only at 12 that I began to feel uncomfortable. I didn’t know the term “child sexual abuse,” and had no words with which to describe my discomfort with the “games” he played — but I sensed there was something wrong about the silence that he demanded. When I was 13, I left Delhi for Calcutta, to study in that city, and left my abuser behind. But he didn’t forget, and when I came back to Delhi as a 17-year-old, he was there. FIERCE, PROTECTIVE BARRIER At 17, I knew now that he had no right to do this to me. When he sent poems, said that despite the four decades that separated us, we were supposed to “be together,” I broke my own silence — but only partly. I told my mother and my sister, and they formed a fierce, protective barrier between me and my abuser. But the man who had started his abuse when I was nine was still invited to my wedding, because we were all keeping secrets, trying to protect one family member or another. (He was married, with grown children of his own.) Years later, when my abuser was dying of old age and diabetes, I visited him. There was no space for a long conversation, but I did tell him that I would not forget, even if forgiveness was possible. The silence around the abuse festered and caused damage for years, until finally, in my thirties, the difficult, liberating process of healing began. If this story saddens you, please think about this: my

story is neither new nor rare, nor was the man who abused me a monster, or in any way out of the ordinary. According to a 2007 survey (the largest of its kind in India) conducted by the Ministry of Women and Child Welfare, over 53 per cent of Indian children have experienced some form of sexual abuse — a slightly higher percentage of boys than girls. I am only one of many. As I learned to cope with the fallout from the childhood abuse, I made unexpected connections, found good friends, found strong mentors, found help, found my voice again and built a happier, more free life. If I bring up the abuse today, it’s to make a point about the importance of consent in the debate over gender equality in India. Child abuse survivors are experts in two areas: we’ve taken a masterclass in the toxicity of silence and secretkeeping, and we have doctorates in our understanding of the importance of consent. It can take survivors, like rape survivors of either gender, years to reclaim a sense of ownership over their own bodies. The body is the site of so many violations, starting with the chief one: our abusers did not ask us for permission to use our bodies as they pleased. Children subjected to abuse learn one harsh lesson — their bodies are not their own. RIGHT TO OFFER OR WITHHOLD Over years, those of us who are fortunate enough to find counsellors and healers learn to reclaim our bodies. We learn as adults what children are supposed to know by

instinct: we learn that we can be safe in our bodies, we learn to allow ourselves pleasure, to take care of ourselves, and most of all, we learn that we have the right to offer or withhold permission to other people, when they want access to our bodies, our selves.In December 2012, a violent gang rape in Delhi took the life of a young woman and set off a raging debate over women’s freedoms and rape laws. In all the complex arguments we’ve heard in the last few months in Indiaonrape,violenceagainstwomen,wehavenotdiscussed consent as much as we need to. When we talk about rape, women’s bodies are often discussed as though they were property: how much freedom should the Indian family allowitsdaughters,wives,sisters,mothers?Recently,rejecting the Verma Committee’s strong appeal that marital rape be made an offence under the law, the Standing Committee on Home said that (a) the Indian family system would be disturbed(b)therewerepracticaldifficultiesand(c)marriage presumes consent.These assumptions expose the toxicity at the heart of a certain view of the Indian family. For marriage to “presume consent,” you must assume that a woman gives up all rights to her body, to her very self, once she goes through the ceremony of marriage. You must also presume that a man is granted the legally sanctified right to access over his wife’s body, regardless of whether she finds sex unwelcome, frightening, painful, violent or simply doesn’t feel like it that day. Courtsy


leh times sunday 11 mar 2013


sports/EntErtainmEnt Ingram, Kleinveldt star in huge win South Africa began their journey to the Champions Trophy with a leap - not just a step - as they overcame Pakistan with a polished all-round effort that was set up by their batsmen and finished off in the field. Importantly for them, the contributions came from quarters that have been areas of concern in the past. The middle order, and Colin Ingram in particular, playedameaningfulpartandabowlingattackwithout Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel functioned effectively. South Africa's batsmen dealt with Pakistan's quartet of spinners with ease while their seamers, led by Ryan McLarenandRoryKleinveldt,shuttheoppositionout of the match. By contrast, Pakistan suffered because they fielded only two seamers and did not use Saeed Ajmal well enough, taking him off after he had made a breakthrough. The fifth and sixth bowlers, Shahid Afridi

and Shoaib Malik, conceded 81 runs in 11 overs runs onasurfacethatdidnotaidturn,andagainstbatsmen who were intent on proving their captain's belief that they were capable of smothering the spin threat. RoryKleinveldtfinishedwith4for22offjust5.2overs. This is the lowest number of overs bowled by a South African bowler in an innings while finishing with a four-wicket haul or more. The 125-run win is South Africa's sixth by a margin of 100 or more runs against Pakistan. Four of these have come in home ODIs. South Africa's total of 315 is their fourth-highest total against Pakistan and their second 300-plus score against them at home. Colin Ingram's century is his second and the 14th overall by a South African batsman against Pakistan. Ingram's previous century came in Abu Dhabi in 2010. Ingram's hundred is his third in ODIs and second in Bloemfontein. He has scored 626 runs in 19 ODIs at an average of 44.71. The120-runstandbetweenIngramandABdeVilliers is the third highest third-wicket stand for South AfricaagainstPakistanandtheirhighestsuchstandagainst them at home. De Villiers has been involved in the top three stands. Shahid Afridi became the first batsman to pass the 300-sixes mark in ODIs. Afridi has now hit 301 sixes in 324 innings. Sanath Jayasuriya is second with 270 sixes. The number of overs faced by Pakistan (36.2) is the joint fourth lowest for a completed innings against South Africa. The lowest is 25 overs in Mohali in 2006. The Pakistan quicks had started well as both Junaid KhanandUmarGulfoundearlyseammovement.Gul

repeatedly beat Graeme Smith's bat with deliveries that moved away. Even Hashim Amla, who opened the boundary count with a gorgeous coax through the covers, did not find the going easy. He inside-edged Junaidforfourearlyonandwentontodoittwicemore inasomewhatcharmedstint,whichalsoincludedhim being dropped on 15. The openers chose to take the Powerplay as soon as it become available. Pakistan used it to introduce spin, which they continued with for 21 overs, but it only restrictedSouthAfricaforawhile.Theyscored29runs in the Powerplay for the loss of Smith. AB de Villiers promoted himself to No. 3 and was joined by Colin Ingram after Amla had one too many dalliances with chanceandwascaughtonthedeepsquare-legboundary. De Villiers and Ingram shared in the most important stand of the innings, with Ingram's knock of greater importance as he tries to cement a spot in the starting XI. Ingram swept well and for the most part they accumulated runs quietly but quickly. De Villiers hit his first boundary after he had scored 37 runs but his search for singles was ceaseless. When he did find the rope, he did it a second time for good measure. He made room against Ajmal and lofted over extra cover for four to bring up his half-century and then pulled the next ball to bring up the century stand off 103 balls. It had swelled to 120whenAjmalhadthelastlaughasdeVillierslobbed to short cover.Ingram took over and played his part in ending Afridi's participation with the ball. His eighth and last over cost 21 runs; Ingram hit two out of five boundaries. Faf du Plessis was responsible for the otherthree.Heputon62withIngrambeforescooping to short fine leg.

MS Dhoni behind Virender Sehwag's Nadal pleased by winning return to hard-court Test ouster, says Sorve Ganguly

Kolkata: Expressing surprise over the dropping of dashing India opener

VirenderSehwag,formercaptainSourav Ganguly Saturday said current team

skipper MS Dhoni had a hand in the exclusion."It would be wrong to assume that there are no inputs from Dhoni in selection matters. If a captain asks for a particular player it is difficult for the selectorstosayno.SoIbelievetherewere inputs from Dhoni even if he may not attend selection meetings," said Ganguly."Iamverysurprisedathisexclusion.IfSachin(Tendulkar)andDhoniwho have been struggling with their respective forms can be persisted with, then what's wrong with Sehwag," he asked.It would be wrong to assume that there are no inputs from Dhoni in selection matters, the former India captain said on Saturday.Describing Sehwag as one of the all-time Test cricket greats, Ganguly said team India will miss his presence."He has completely changed

India lucky to have Tendulkar and Dhoni, says Henriques

Mohali: India is lucky to have theexperienceofseniorplayers such as Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Sachin Tendulkar and it would be a big challenge for Australia to make a comeback

in the third Test, allrounder Moises Henriques said here on Sunday.“It’s a different challenge. It is certainly very tough to win over here, to win Test matchesoverhere,againstvery

experienced Indian team and very experienced Indian spinners,” Henriques said on Sunday.“You have guys like (M S) Dhoni and (Sachin) Tendulkar still leading the team around as senior players, obviously it very lucky to have those characters around. They are very strong team, especially here (at home) and they play very well. So it’s a big challenge forallofus.ForalotofAustralian players it is their first tour to India, so it is a new challenge. Wearealldoingasmuchwecan to learn from every match we play here. We got to learn faster becauseweneedtowinthisTest match,” he added.Henriques also heaped praise on Indian

spinners R Ashwin and Harbhajan Singh, terming them as fantastic bowlers.Australia themselvesarelackinginexperience after the retirement of stalwartssuchasRickyPonting and Michael Hussey recently. Henriques heaped praise on Indian spinners R Ashwin and HarbhajanSingh,termingthem as “fantastic bowlers” and said theyhavetotakepositivesfrom the two Test losses and quickly learn from their mistakes.“Obviously we have to learn from what we haven’t done well in the first couple of Testmatches.Obviously,welost a lot of wickets to spin. We haven’t scored enough runs as we should have,” he said.

Irfan Pathan confident to make comeback in Test cricket


Mumbai: Ignored for Test cricket for nearlyfiveyears,IndianallrounderIrfanPathan hasvowedtomakeacomebackinthehighest form of the game sooner or later. "Not playing Test cricket for so many years is a different thing, but now I know I can play Test cricket again. I have made a promise tomyselfandIwillfulfilthatdream,"Pathan said at the Cricket Club of India. The 28-year-old, who raised visions of Kapil Dev earlier in his stop-start international careerbeforeinjuriesandpoorformtooktheir toll, said he proved his critics wrong in the pastafterbeingdroppedfromtheODIteam. "Three years ago a lot of people said I am not going to play international cricket ever again.ButIknewIamgoingtoplayitagain. Istartedplayingfirstclasscricketandmade my comeback in Australia (in T20s and

ODIs on 2011-12tour)eventhougheveryone hadwrittenmeoff,"saidPathan."Iamworking towards my goal and I am pretty sure it's goingtohappensoonerorlater.Onlyoneman can stop me from playing Test cricket - obviously there's selection but that's a different thing-andthat'smeifIdon'tworktowards my goal," he said confidently. The left-arm swing bowler, who has not played any competitive cricket since hurting his left knee during the Ranji Trophy gameagainstKarnatakainearlyNovember, said he has fully recovered and was all set to return to action during the Mushtaq Ali T20tournament."Iamfitnowandavailable to play any level of cricket. I will play Mushtaq Ali Trophy for Baroda. Luckily it was notmyfrontfoot(landing)thatwasinjured following the impact after my fall. It's all

CALIFORNIA ;Rafael Nadal fought through his return to hard-courts after nearly a year awayfromthesurface,withthe fifthseedpleasedbyanopening win over American Ryan Harrison7-6(7-3),6-2attheIndian Wells Masters on Saturday. Nadal was the question mark of the sport after missing seven months with a knee injury and then returning last month on claytowintwotitlesfromthree tournaments. “After seven months I’m not gonnatakecrazyrisks,”saidthe fifthseed.“ButIamhere.When I am playing a tournament, if you know me, my mentality is trying my best in every moment.“I really don’t think

thegrammarofTestmatchopening.The sheer number of runs and the manner in which he has scored them, India will miss his presence. His impact in the game is comparable only to greats like Sachin, (Rahul) Dravid and (Sunil) Gavaskar," he said.The southpaw also refused to read much into the India's consecutive Test match wins against Australiaintheongoingfourmatchhome series. "People have a very short memory. I am amazed at some people lauding team India'srecentefforts.Theyseemtohave forgotten that we were badly drubbed in10outof13testmatcheswelastplayed," headded.SehwagwasdroppedonThursdayfromthesquadforthelasttwoTests againstAustralia,afterfailingtoperform and impress the selectors.

for me. “Butforthefirsttournamenton hard and with the conditions, I don’texpectbigresults,I’mjust here to practise with the other players, compete like tonight I did, have another chance the day after tomorrow. “That’sverypositiveforme.I’m happy, and I don’t expect a lot. I take everything as positive. For me, today, every victory playing great, playing bad has a lot of value.”“But for the first tournament on hard and with the conditions, I don’t expect bigresults,I’mjustheretopractisewiththeotherplayers,compete like tonight I did, have another chance the day after tomorrow.


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clearnowandmybowlingisbacktonormal," he said. "When I was injured I was pretty close to playing Test cricket.

about my knee, but is true that formetodayaftersevenmonths out of competition is easier to startandplayonclaymorethan grass.” “Hard-courtsareaggressivefor thebody.Ifthenextgenerations wants to have longer careers and want to finish his careers with better conditions physically,that’smyhumbleopinion, the ATP has to find a solution and not continue playing more and more tournaments on this surface that is the harder one for the joints and for the knees, for the foot, for the back, for everything,” he said. “I’m very happy about what I didinLatinAmericanclaycourt season. It was very important

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