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Jammu & Kashmir

Hundreds attend slain journalist Shujaat Bukhari's funeral

Hundreds of mourners attended the funeral of senior journalist and Editor-in-Chief of English daily "Rising Kashmir" Shujaat Bukhari in his ancestral hometown of Kheeri in Baramulla district of Jammu and Kashmir on Friday.

Shujaat Bukhari
Shujaat Bukhari
Hundreds of mourners attended the funeral of senior journalist and Editor-in-Chief of English daily "Rising Kashmir" Shujaat Bukhari in his ancestral hometown of Kheeri in Baramulla district of Jammu and Kashmir on Friday.
 
Former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, state Public Works Minister Naeem Akhtar, senior Congress leader Saifuddin Soz, local journalists and other members from all sections of society attended the funeral.
 
Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti was also present in Kheeri.
 
Three motorcycle-borne militants killed Bukhari and two of his security guards as he was getting into his car in Srinagar's Press Enclave area at around 7.15 p.m. on Wednesday to reach home in time for Iftar.
 
IANS
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Senior Kashmiri journalist Shujaat Bukhari shot dead in Srinagar

Senior journalist and Editor-in-Chief of English daily "Rising Kashmir" Shujaat Bhukhari was on Thursday shot dead by militants outside his office in Srinagar, police said.

Shujaat Bukhari
Shujaat Bukhari
Senior journalist and Editor-in-Chief of English daily "Rising Kashmir" Shujaat Bhukhari was on Thursday shot dead by militants outside his office here, police said.
 
State police chief S.P.Vaid said that it was around 7.15 p.m., the Iftar time, that Bukhari came out of his office in Press Enclave and was getting  into his car when he was attacked by militants.
 
"Three motorcycle-borne militants came and fired at Bukhari and his guards. Bukhari and one guard were killed and another security guard critically injured," he said.
 
The killing drew wide condemnation from politicians across India and media organisations.
 
Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti said: "Shocked & deeply saddened by the sudden demise of Shujaat Bukhari. The scourge of terror has reared its ugly head on the eve of Eid. I strongly condemn this act of mindless violence & pray for his soul to rest in peace. My deepest condolences to his family." 
 
Former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, in a tweet, recited the Muslim prayer on hearing about a Muslim's death, and said: "Shocked beyond words. May Shujaat find place in Jannat & May his loved ones find strength at this difficult time."
 
Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh termed it an "act of cowardice".
 
"The killing of @RisingKashmir editor, Shujaat Bukhari is an act of cowardice. It is an attempt to silence the saner voices of Kashmir. He was a courageous and fearless journalist. Extremely shocked & pained at his death. My thoughts and prayers are with his bereaved family," he said on his Twitter handle.
 
The Congress said it was anguished, with party President Rahul Gandhi terming Bukhari "a brave heart who fought fearlessly for justice and peace".
 
"He was a brave heart who fought fearlessly for justice and peace in Jammu and Kashmir. My condolences to his family. He will be missed," Gandhi said in a tweet.
 
Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala said: "Anguished beyond words. Security situation in J&K has hit its nadir. Demand the Centre to take swift action to nab the killers. They can silence us but not our thoughts." 
 
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Thursday expressed shock.
 
"Saddened and shocked at the brutal killing of respected editor and senior journalist @bukharishujaat. With a few hours to go for Eid this is terrible," Banerjee tweeted.
 
Several journalist bodies condemned the killing and demanded swift action against the forces responsible for his killing. 
 
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Condemning what it called a "dastardly attack", the Editors Guild of India said that Bukhari was "a voice of moderation and a courageous, big-hearted editor who mentored a large cadre of young journalists from Kashmir". 
 
"The guild calls upon the government of Jammu and Kashmir to take urgent steps to bring to book the culprits and ensure safety and security for the media in the state," it said in a statement. 
 
It added that an attack on a journalist challenges the very foundations of a free press and vibrant democracy and more so in a state like Jammu and Kashmir that is going through militancy, and called upon the state and Central government to enhance security for all journalists in the state. 
 
"Recent weeks have also seen threats of violence against many journalists in different parts of the country," it added. 
 
The Press Club of India also "strongly condemned" the killing in the holy month of Ramadan and said that "forces inimical to restoring peace in Kashmir Valley had silenced a voice of reason, logic and peace".
 
"Press Club of India deeply mourns the loss of Shujaat Bukhari's life and extends its condolences to the bereaved family in this hour of crisis," it said in a statement.
 
It added that the "terror attack" showed that lives of journalists were not safe.
 
"Press Club of India has time and again underlined the threat to the lives of journalists working under difficult and challenging circumstances and demanded protection for them," it said.
 
The Indian Women's Press Corps, Press Association and Federation of Press Club of India also expressed "deep shock and outrage at the brazen murder" of Bukhari. 
 
They said that Bukhari was a respected journalist known for his wide range of analytical writings on Kashmir and that he continued to write actively despite the death threats issued to him. 
 
"His murder can only be viewed as yet another attempt to muzzle the media and the freedom of the press in the valley," a joint statement said. 
 
Bukhari started his career as a young reporter with Kashmir Times and moved to The Hindu in the 1990s. Later, he established his own English daily Rising Kashmir.
 
IANS
 
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Senior journalist Shujaat Bukhari shot dead in Srinagar

Senior journalist and Editor-in-Chief of English daily "Rising Kashmir" Shujaat Bhukhari was on Thursday shot dead by militants outside his office in Srinagar, police said.

Shujaat Bukhari
Shujaat Bukhari
Senior journalist and Editor-in-Chief of English daily "Rising Kashmir" Shujaat Bhukhari was on Thursday shot dead by militants outside his office here, police said.
 
State police chief S. P. Vaid said that it was around 7.15 p.m., the Iftar time, that Bukhari came out of his office in Press Enclave and was boarding his car when he was attacked by militants.
 
"Three motorcycle-borne militants came and fired at Bukhari and his guards. Bukhari and one guard were killed and another security guard critically injured," he said.
 
Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti expressed shock at the killing.
 
"Shocked & deeply saddened by the sudden demise of Shujaat Bukhari. The scourge of terror has reared its ugly head on the eve of Eid. I strongly condemn this act of mindless violence & pray for his soul to rest in peace. My deepest condolences to his family," she said in a tweet.
 
Former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah also expressed shock at the gruesome murder of this senior Kashmiri journalist. Reciting the Muslim prayer on hearing about a Muslim's death, he said: "Shocked beyond words. May Shujaat find place in Jannat & May his loved ones find strength at this difficult time."
 
Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh also expressed shock at the incident.
 
"The killing of @RisingKashmir editor, Shujaat Bukhari is an act of cowardice. It is an attempt to silence the saner voices of Kashmir. He was a courageous and fearless journalist. Extremely shocked & pained at his death. My thoughts and prayers are with his bereaved family," he said on his Twitter handle.
 
The murder also sent shock waves in the media fraternity.
 
IANS
 
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16 trapped in landslide in J&K as authorities issue flood alert in state

At least 16 persons were believed trapped after a landslide buried several houses in the Chadoora area of Budgam district of Jammu & Kashmir on Monday even as the authorities issued a flood alert after incessant rains in the state since Saturday.

 
Water level in Jhelum rises in Kashmir, rescue efforts underway
At least 16 persons were believed trapped after a landslide buried several houses in the Chadoora area of Budgam district of Jammu & Kashmir today even as the authorities issued a flood alert after incessant rains in the state since Saturday.
 
The police and the army, along with the people of the area, have launched a major effort to rescue those feared trapped under the tons of mud in Laiden village of Chadoora area, official sources said.
 
The continuous rains of the past few days have raised fears of a repeat of the devastating floods that hit the state in September last year -- the worst in six decades.
 
But officials said the rain gods had relented a bit today and they were hopeful of an improvement in the situation.
 
However, the Jhelum was flowing close to the danger level in many areas and the authorities have alerted those living on its banks to be vigilant and be prepared to move to safer areas if necessary.
 
Schools have been closed for the next two days as a precautionary measure, they said.
 
In New Delhi, the Ministry of Home Affairs said it was in touch with the state government and closely monitoring the situation of increasing water levels in the Jhelum. No breach of embankment has been reported, it said.
 
'However, as a precautionary measure, to assist the state government authorities, two teams of NDRF have been deputed and another four teams kept stand-by. 
 
"The state government has been asked to indicate the assistance required by them," an official press release added.
 
Officials said they had learnt from last year's disaster and are taking several precautionary steps to prevent a repeat of that kind of tragedy. Boats, sandbags and other facilities are being made available in all the vulnerable areas.
 
In particular, a close watch is being kept on the embankments of the river, which had suffered breaches at many places last year and which were not plugged fully yet.
 
"There is no reason for panic, but we have asked the people to be alert," the officials said.
 
Jammu & Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammed Sayeed went around some parts of Srinagar to take stock of the situation.
 
Meanwhile, with the meteorological department forecasting more rains over the next few days, the civil administration has reached out to the Arm for rescue and relief efforts in Srinagar and Pulwama districts.
 
The Army is keeping a close watch on the situation and 20 columns with rescue boats and other equipment have been kept on alert.
 
An official spokesperson said the Army was assisting the civil administration in flood control measures in Baramulla since yesterday and a relief operation is under progress in South Kashmir to rescue people trapped in collapsed houses. 
 
Army engineers are also undertaking strengthening of identified weak spots on the bunds of Jhelum river near Sonwar in Srinagar. 
 
Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh discussed the situation in the state with Mr Sayeed and assured him of full Central assistance to tackle any eventuality.
 
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A meeting of the National Crisis Management Committee (NCMC) was held here today under the chairmanship of Cabinet Secretary, Ajit Seth to take stock of the situation and to review the arrangements made or required to be made to deal with it.
 
The meeting was attended by the Secretaries and other senior officers of the relevant departments of the Government of India. The Chief Secretary of Jammu & Kashmir and other officers of the State Government participated through video conferencing. 
 
The Chief Secretary gave an account of the ground situation indicating that the Jhelum is flowing above the danger mark at certain places and as a result, flood alert has been issued by the State Government.
 
He said the State Government was geared up to deal with the situation and all steps had been taken to safeguard life and property from the flood waters. They have adequate sand bags and river bank reinforcement material. As a precautionary measure adequate quantities of rice, potable water and medical supplies are being stocked at various locations. There is no shortage of various types of fuel as there is a minimum stock level of all varieties of fuel for 10 days. 
 
The National Highway 1-A between Jammu and Srinagar, which is blocked due to landslides, is likely to be cleared for vehicular traffic later today.
 
Mr Seth reviewed the preparatory arrangements made to handle the flood situation and issued necessary directions to all departments of the Government of India to provide all possible assistance to tide over the crisis. 
 
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Centre not consulted, informed: Modi tells Lok Sabha on Masarat Alam's release

Prime Minister Narendra Modi told the Lok Sabha on Monday that the Centre was not consulted or informed by the Jammu & Kashmir government on its decision to release separatist Masarat Alam and made it clear that he shared the anger of the house on the issue.

 
Modi says Centre not consulted on Masarat Alam release
Prime Minister Narendra Modi today told the Lok Sabha that the Centre was not consulted or informed by the Jammu & Kashmir government on its decision to release separatist Masarat Alam and made it clear that he shared the anger of the house on the issue.
 
"There is outrage in the house and outside and I would like to add my voice to that," he said after the Congress and other Opposition parties raised the issue, demanding a statement from the Prime Minister clarifying the Government's position on Jammu & Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammed Sayeed's decision.
 
Mr Modi's Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is a partner of Mr Sayeed's People's Democratic Party (PDP) in the J&K government.
 
"This country, on the issue of separatism, terrorism, does not think in partisan terms and will not do even now," he said, noting that the house had expressed its outrage in one voice today.
 
"I wish to assure the house, the people of the country that whatever steps, decisions have been taken in Jammu & Kashmir, were not taken in consultation with Government of India  and they were done without informing the Government of India," he said.
 
He urged members not to politicise the issue, though he acknowledged that they had the right to criticise the BJP as a partner in the J&K government.
 
"But let us not speak in different voices on issues related to national security, let us not give that message to the world or to Jammu and Kashmir or to the rest of the country.
 
"That is why I would like to assure the house and the entire country that this government will not accept any such steps. We do not approve of any compromise with the unity and integrity of the country," he said.
 
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"Decisions can be taken only within the limits of the Constitution, now and in the future also," he said.
 
Mr Modi said it was wrong to suggest that he was staying silent on the issue because he had spoken about such issues only a few days ago in the house.
 
"We are those people, who for these principles, had sacrificed the life of Shyama Prasad Mukherjee. Therefore, kindly do not give us lessons in patriotism," he told the Opposition.
 
Mr Modi said the Centre had sought some clarifications from the state government on the decision and would provide more information to the house as and when they are received.
 
"This is not the anger of any one party, but of the entire country...not of those benches or these benches, it is of the entire house," he said.
 
"And in one voice, we want to convey to separatist forces, their supporters and those who misuse the law, our outrage. This house is committed to the unity and integrity of the country and the government will take all the steps needed in this regard," he added.
 
The Congress was not fully satisfied with Mr Modi's statement, suggesting that, if he felt so strongly about it, the BJP should withdraw its support to the PDP.
 
Earlier, Mr Rajnath Singh said the Home Ministry had sought a report from the J&K government on the release of Alam and some clarifications.
 
He said that, after receiving the clarifications, the Centre would take appropriate steps in the matter.
 
Alam, 44, had been arrested by the previous Omar Abdullah-led government in J&K in 2010 for his alleged role in fanning trouble during street protests, in which more than a hundred people had died. He was released on Saturday from the Baramullah jail, within days after Mr Sayeed assumed office.
 
The PDP has justified the release, saying it was part of its efforts for reconciliation and that the government could not engage with separatists and bring them into the mainstream when they were in prison.
 
Mr Sayeed had caused the BJP some embarrassment within hours of being sworn in on March 1 when, addressing mediapersons, he thanked "people from across the border", which was taken as a reference to Pakistan and militants -- for allowing the smooth conduct of the recent Assembly elections in the state.
 
The Congress and other parties had raised a similar ruckus on the issue in the Rajya Sabha, too.
 
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Four policemen killed in Kashmir Valley

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Four policemen were killed on Tuesday in a militant attack in Jammu and Kashmir's Shopian district.
 
The militants attacked a police picket in Zainpora village that was set up to protect members of the minority community.
 
Police said three policemen were killed on the spot while a fourth policeman died while being shifted to hospital. The militants escaped with four rifles of the policemen.
 
A manhunt was launched after the attack to trace the assailants.
 
The Jaish-e-Muhammad (JeM) outfit has claimed responsibility for the attack.
 
IANS
 
 
 

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SC declines to entertain plea against J&K assembly dissolution

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The Supreme Court on Monday declined to entertain a petition challenging Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik's decision to dissolve the state assembly and impose Governor's rule.
 
"We are not inclined to entertain," said a bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justice Sanjay Krishan Kaul as senior counsel Jaideep Gupta told the bench that Malik dissolved the assembly even though there were two letters before him staking claim to form the government. 
 
Appearing for Bharatiya Janata Party lawmaker Gagan Bhagat in the now dissolved House, Gupta referred to an earlier judgment of the top court which said that Governor should have made every effort to examine if a government can be formed before exercising the extreme option of dissolving the elected assembly.
 
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Separatist shutdown affects life in Srinagar

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A shutdown called by separatists on Monday affected life in Srinagar and some other places in the Kashmir Valley.
 
The Joint Resistance Leadership (JRL), a separatist conglomerate headed by Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umer Farooq and Muhammad Yasin Malik, called the shutdown to highlight alleged human rights violations by the security forces.
 
Shops, public transport and other business establishments remained closed in old city and uptown areas in the city.
 
Private transport and three wheelers were, however, seen plying on the roads.
 
Authorities have deployed police and Central Reserve Police Force troopers in Srinagar's old city area and other law and order sensitive places of the valley.
 
No untoward incident has been reported from anywhere so far.
 
IANS
 

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Pakistani LeT commander, Kashmiri militants killed in J&K

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A Pakistani commander of the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) terror outfit and two Kashmiri militants were killed by the Indian forces in an 18-hour-long gun battle that ended on Sunday here in the outskirts of the Jammu and Kashmir capital, police said.
 
The exact identity of the slain militants was being ascertained.
 
An Indian soldier, a Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) trooper and three policemen were injured late on Saturday, hours after the encounter broke out around evening in the Mujgund area following a tip off about militant presence.
 
The operation stretched for hours as militants kept on changing locations during the gunfight within the cordoned off area, a police officer explained.
 
Four residential houses were also damaged during the operation.
 
Civilian protesters clashed with the security forces the moment the gun battle ended on Sunday forcing authorities to suspend mobile Internet services in Srinagar district.
 
IANS
 

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Three militants killed in J&K gunfight

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A Pakistani commander of the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and two Kashmiri militants were killed and seven security men injured in an 18-hour-long gun battle that ended on Sunday here in the outskirts of the Jammu and Kashmir capital, police sources said.
 
The exact identity of the slain militants was being ascertained.
 
An Indian soldier, a Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) trooper and three policemen were injured after the encounter broke out on Saturday evening in the Mujgund area following a tip-off.
 
Four residential houses were also damaged during the operation as militants kept on changing locations during the gunfight within the cordoned off area.
 
Civilian protesters clashed with security forces the moment the gun battle ended earlier.
 
Authorities have suspended mobile Internet services in Srinagar district.
 
IANS

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Five security men injured in gunfight in Srinagar

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Five security men were injured on Saturday in an ongoing gunfight between militants and security forces on the outskirts of Srinagar city.
 
Police sources said the five security personnel, including a soldier, a Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) trooper and three policemen, were injured in the fighting in Mujgund area.
 
"The injured men have been shifted to a hospital," an official said.
 
Locals said three houses in the area had been damaged in the fighting.
 
The fight started after the security forces surrounded Mujgund area following information that militants were hiding there.
 
"As the cordon was tightened, the militants opened fire, triggering an encounter," a police officer said.
 
IANS
 

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Peaceful polling in eighth phase of J&K panchayat polls

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Peaceful polling was recorded on Saturday in the 8th phase of the panchayat elections in Jammu and Kashmir, a poll official said.
 
No untoward incident was reported from any of the 2,633 polling stations -- 550 in Kashmir and 2,083 in Jammu -- where voting started at 8 a.m. and ended at 2 p.m. under tight security.
 
The overall voter turnout for the state was 80 per cent while it was 85.1 per cent in Jammu division and 49.7 per cent in the valley.
 
At least 361 polling stations had been categorised as hypersensitive -- 171 in Kashmir and 190 in Jammu.
 
A total of 6,304 candidates were in the fray for 331 sarpanch and 2,007 panch seats in this phase while 43 sarpanches and 681 panches had been elected unopposed.
 
Photo Voter Slips had been distributed among the people to inform them of their polling station.
 
By the end of the seventh phase that took place on December 4, an overall voter turnout of 73.8 per cent had been recorded across the state, with a poll percentage of 44.4 per cent in Kashmir and 83.2 per cent in Jammu.
 
The last of the nine phases of polling will be held on December 11.
 
Panchayat polls were last held in Jammu and Kashmir in 2011.
 
IANS
 
 

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14 die as bus falls into gorge in J&K

 
14 die in bus mishap in Poonch, J&K
Fourteen people were killed and 16 others injured on Saturday when a bus fell into a deep gorge in Jammu and Kashmir's Poonch district, police said on Saturday.
 
While 11 people died instantly in Mandi area after the disaster, three critically injured passengers succumbed to their injuries in a hospital.
 
Three other seriously injured passengers have been flown to Jammu College Hospital for specialized treatment.
 
The accident reportedly occurred when the driver lost control over the bus. Senior officials rushed to Mandi to supervise relief and rescue operations.
 
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11 dead as bus falls into gorge in Poonch district of J&K

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Eleven persons were killed and 19 injured on Saturday in a road accident in Jammu and Kashmir's Poonch district, police said.
 
A bus carrying passengers to Poonch went out of the driver's control and plunged into a deep gorge at Plera in the Mandi area. Condition of five injured was said to be critical.
 
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Voting underway for 8th phase of J&K panchayat polls

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Voting was underway on Saturday for the eighth phase of the panchayat polls across Jammu and Kashmir amid tight security.
 
Voting is being held at 2,633 polling stations -- 550 in Kashmir and 2,083 in Jammu.
 
Polling started at 8 a.m. and will end at 2 p.m.
 
At least 361 polling stations have been categorised as hypersensitive -- 171 in Kashmir and 190 in Jammu.
 
A total of 6304 candidates are in the fray for 331 sarpanch and 2,007 panch seats in this phase while 43 sarpanchs and 681 panchs have been elected unopposed.
 
Photo Voter Slips have been distributed among the people to inform them of their polling station.
 
By the end of the seventh phase that took place on December 4, an overall voter turnout of 73.8 per cent had been recorded across the state, with a poll percentage of 44.4 per cent in the Kashmir and 83.2 per cent in the Jammu.
 
The last of the nine phases of polling will be held on December 11.
 
Panchayat polls were last held in Jammu and Kashmir in 2011.
 
IANS
 

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Two BSF troopers injured in Pakistan firing

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Two Border Security Force (BSF) troopers were critically injured on Thursday in Pakistani firing on the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir's Rajouri district.
 
Police sources said the incident took place in Sunderbani sector.
 
"Pakistan forces targeted two forward locations of the LoC manned by the BSF and Army. Two BSF troopers were injured. They have been shifted to a hospital," an official said.
 
Earlier, a soldier was killed in Pakistan firing in Machil sector in Kupwara district.
 
The Pakistan Army also violated ceasefire in the Uri sector of LoC on Thursday, triggering an Indian retaliation.
 
IANS
 
 
 
 
 

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J&K schools shut as cold wave sweeps Kashmir, Ladakh

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An unabated cold wave is sweeping through the valley and Ladakh region of Jammu and Kashmir that has prompted authorities to shut all schools up to Class 8 for the winter recess, an official said on Wednesday.
 
The minimum temperatures dropped several notches below freezing point, the Met said, adding "The night temperatures are likely to drop further in the coming three to four days as the weather is likely to remain dry during this period." 
 
It was minus 3.0 in Srinagar, minus 5.1 in Pahalgam and minus 4.0 in Gulmarg today.
 
Leh town recorded minus 11.4 while Kargil recorded minus 10.9 in the Ladakh region
 
In the Jammu region, Jammu recorded 9, Katra 8.5, Batote 3.5, Bannihal 0.8 and Bhaderwah 1.4 degrees Celsius.
 
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Voting underway for 7th phase of J&K panchayat polls

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Voting was underway on Tuesday for the seventh phase of the panchayat polls across Jammu and Kashmir amid tight security.
 
Voters were seen queuing outside polling stations in both Jammu and the Kashmir Valley despite the morning chill.
 
Polling started at 8 a.m. and will end at 2 p.m.
 
Voting for this phase is being held at 2,714 polling stations -- 576 in Kashmir and 2,138 in Jammu.
 
At least 892 polling stations have been categorised as hypersensitive in this phase -- 428 in Kashmir and 464 in Jammu.
 
A total of 5,575 candidates are in the fray for 341 sarpanch and 1,798 panch seats while 85 sarpanchs and 912 panchs have been elected unopposed in this phase.
 
Some 475,865 electors will be voting for Sarpanch constituencies and 345880 for Panch constituencies.
 
Photo Voter Slips have been distributed among the people to inform them of their polling station.
 
Poll officials said at the end of the sixth phase held on December 1, an overall voter turnout of 73.6 per cent had been recorded across the state.
 
The nine-phased elections that began on November 17 is slated to end on December 11.
 
Panchayat polls were last held in Jammu and Kashmir in 2011.
 
IANS
 

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Gunfight erupts in Shopian district of J&K

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A gunfight erupted on Monday between militants and the security forces in Shopian district of Jammu and Kashmir, police said.
 
Upon receiving a tip-off, the security forces began a search operation in Sangran village.
 
"As the security forces closed in on the hiding militants, they fired triggering the ongoing gunfight," the police said.
 
Authorities have suspended mobile internet services in Shopian district.
 
IANS
 
 
 
 

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Polling for 6th phase of Panchayat polls ends peacefully in J&K

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Polling for the sixth phase of Panchayat polls ended peacefully on Saturday in Jammu and Kashmir under tight security arrangements.
 
Voters were seen queuing outside polling stations in both Jammu division and Kashmir valley despite the morning chill. Polling started at 8 a.m and ended at 2 p.m.
 
In the Valley, 17.7 per cent voters turned out to exercise their franchise. 41.5 per cent voters turned out in Ganderbal district, while just 4.6 per cent came out to vote in Kulgam district.
 
In a repoll held in Kupwara district, 81.9 per cent votes were cast.
 
In the Jammu division, 83.7 per cent voter turnout was recorded.
 
For the entire state, the overall voter turnout was 76.2 per cent.
 
Voting for this phase was held at 3,174 polling stations -- 410 in Kashmir and 2,764 in Jammu.
 
At least of 771 polling stations had been categorised as hypersensitive -- 410 in Kashmir and 361 in Jammu.
 
A total of 7,156 candidates were in the fray for 406 Sarpanch and 2,277 Panch seats, while 111 Sarpanchs and 1,048 Panchs were elected unopposed in this phase. Some 597,396 electors were eligible to vote for the Sarpanch constituencies and 457,581 for the Panch.
 
Photo Voter Slips had been distributed among the voters to inform them of their polling stations.
 
In the fifth phase on November 29, the state witnessed a polling percentage of 71.1 per cent.  In the fourth phase on November 27, 71.3 per cent polling was recorded. The third phase held on November 23 witnessed a polling percentage of 75.2 per cent, while 71.1 per cent was recorded in the second phase on November 20. In the first phase held on November 17, 74.1 per cent polling was recorded.
 
The last of the nine phases of polling is scheduled for December 11.
 
Panchayat elections were last held in Jammu and Kashmir in 2011.
 
IANS
 

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J&K bars Hurriyat meet, puts Mirwaiz under house arrest

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A one-day Hurriyat session on Saturday here was disallowed by the Jammu and Kashmir authorities, who also placed separatist leader Mirwaiz Umer Farooq under house arrest.
 
"One day #Hurriyat workers/delegate session barred! Put again under #HouseArrest! Rajbagh office o f Hurriyat sealed! Not allowed any space or scope for any political activity!" Umer Farooq tweeted.
 
"So much for practising honest democracy Governor sahab!" he said, taking a dig at Governor Satya Pal Malik.
 
The uptown Rajbagh office of the Hurriyat group was shut down to prevent any assembly of separatist forces.
 
IANS
 
 
 
 
 

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Voting underway for 6th phase of J&K panchayat polls

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Voting was underway on Saturday for the sixth phase of panchayat polls across Jammu and Kashmir amid tight security.
 
Voters were seen queuing outside polling stations in both the Jammu division and the Kashmir Valley despite the morning chill.
 
Polling started at 8 a.m. and will end at 2 p.m.
 
Voting for this phase is being held at 3,174 polling stations -- 410 in Kashmir and 2,764 in Jammu.
 
A total of 7,156 candidates are in the fray for 406 sarpanch and 2,277 panch seats while 111 sarpanchs and 1,048 panchs have been elected unopposed in this phase.
 
Some 597,396 electors will be voting for sarpanch constituencies and 457,581 for the panch.
 
Photo Voter Slips have been distributed among the voters to inform them of their polling stations.
 
In the fifth phase on November 29, the state witnessed a polling percentage of 71.1 per cent.
 
In the fourth phase on November 27, 71.3 per cent polling was recorded..
 
The third phase held on November 23 witnessed a polling percentage of 75.2 per cent, while 71.1 per cent was recorded in the second phase on November 20. In the first phase held on November 17, 74.1 per cent polling was recorded.
 
The last polls of the nine-phased election is scheduled for December 11.
 
Panchayat elections were last held in Jammu and Kashmir in 2011.
 
IANS
 

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Polling ends for 5th phase of Panchayat polls in J&K

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Polling for the fifth phase of Panchayat elections ended peacefully on Thursday in Jammu and Kashmir.
 
The overall voter turnout in the 8 a.m.-2 p.m. was 34.9 per cent in the Kashmir Valley, with Kupwara district recording the highest of 45.9 per cent and Pulwama district the lowest (0.4 per cent).
 
The voter participation was 84.2 per cent in Jammu division, with Jammu district accounting for 87.6 per cent.
 
The overall voter turnout in the state was 72.8 per cent.
 
Voting took place in 2,512 polling stations -- 769 in Kashmir and 1,743 in Jammu divisions.
 
Officials said 4,763 candidates were in the fray in this phase -- for 309 Sarpanch and 1,534 Panch seats. A total of 118 Sarpanchs and 1,046 panchs have been elected unopposed.
 
A total of 404,283 electors were eligible to vote in the Sarpanch constituencies and 270,295 for Panch constituencies.
 
The nine-phase Panchayat polls will end on December 17. Panchayat polls were last held in the troubled state in 2011.
 
IANS
 

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Two militants killed in J&K gunfight

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Two militants were killed on Thursday in a gunfight with the security forces in Jammu and Kashmir's Pulwama district, police said.
 
The security forces launched a search operation following a tip-off about hiding militants in Sharshali village of Khrew area.
 
"As the searches were going on, the security forces were fired upon by the terrorists. In the ensuing encounter, two terrorists were killed and the bodies were retrieved along with arms and ammunitions," the police said. 
 
The slain terrorists' identities and affiliations were being ascertained.
 
IANS
 

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J&K: Slain journalist Shujaat Bukhari's killer Naveed Jatt shot dead

Shujaat Bukhari
Shujaat Bukhari
A top Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) commander, Naveed Jatt, who was wanted for the murder of senior journalist Shujaat Bukhari, was killed on Wednesday in a gunfight in Jammu and Kashmir's Badgam district, police sources said.
 
Although an official confirmation was still awaited, the sources said that Jatt, alias Abu Hanzullah, was among the two militants killed in the gunfight that broke out earlier in the day during a cordon and search operation in Kuthpora village. 
 
A Pakistani national belonging to Multan, Jatt had escaped from police custody on February 6, when he was being taken for a medical check-up to a hospital from the Srinagar Central Jail.
 
Two policeman were also killed during Jatt's escape from the S.M.H.S. hospital here.
 
Jatt was among the top LeT militants wanted by the security forces. 
 
He was believed to be involved in the murder of Bukhari, the then Editor-in-chief of Rising Kashmir, an English daily. 
 
Bukhari was gunned down along with two of his guards in the Press Enclave area in the city on June 14.
 
The killing of Jatt is seen as a big success for the security forces in their anti-militancy operations.
 
IANS
 

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