Re: J&K News and Discussion - 2016
Posted: 06 Jun 2019 13:22
Consortium of Indian Defence Websites
It is believed that several Kashmir experts familiar with the ongoing drift in the Valley have been used as a sounding board on this issue on Wednesday. While the Narendra Modi government failed to submit an affidavit stating its position on Article 35A in the Supreme Court, where a bunch of PILs have been pending since August 2014, two successive Attorneys General -- Mukul Rohatgi and K.K. Venugopal -- had sought successive extensions until Governor's rule was imposed in J&K in June 2018.
It was incorporated into the Constitution in 1954 by an order of the then President Rajendra Prasad on the advice of the Jawaharlal Nehru Cabinet. The controversial Constitution (Application to Jammu and Kashmir) Order of 1954 followed the 1952 Delhi Agreement entered into between Nehru and the then Prime Minister of Jammu and Kashmir Sheikh Abdullah, which extended Indian citizenship to the "state subjects" of Jammu and Kashmir.
The Presidential Order was issued under Article 370 (1) (d) of the Constitution. This provision allows the President to make certain "exceptions and modifications" to the Constitution for the benefit of "state subjects" of Jammu and Kashmir. Ergo, Article 35A was added to the Constitution as a testimony of the special consideration the Indian government accorded to the "permanent residents" of Jammu and Kashmir.
Significantly, the legislative or parliamentary route was bypassed with the Presidential Order which incorporated Article 35A into the Constitution. Article 368 (i) of the Constitution empowers only Parliament to amend the Constitution. Which begs the question whether this Presidential Order overwrote the Constitution?
Since Article 35A was never debated and passed into law by Parliament, is it infructuous or null and void? A five-judge Bench of the Supreme Court in its March 1961 judgment in Puranlal Lakhanpal vs The President of India discusses the President's powers under Article 370 to "modify" the Constitution. Though the court observes that the President may modify an existing provision in the Constitution under Article 370, the judgment is silent as to whether the President can, without the Parliament's knowledge, introduce a new Article. This question thus remains open.
A writ petition filed by NGO We the Citizens challenges the validity of both Article 35A and Article 370. It argues that four representatives from Kashmir were part of the Constituent Assembly involved in the drafting of the Constitution and the State of Jammu and Kashmir was never accorded any special status in the Constitution. Article 370 was only a "temporary provision" to help bring normality in Jammu and Kashmir and strengthen democracy in that state, it contends.
The Constitution-makers did not intend Article 370 to be a tool to bring permanent amendments, like Article 35A, in the Constitution. The petition said Article 35A is against the "very spirit of oneness of India" as it creates a "class within a class of Indian citizens". Restricting citizens from other states from getting employment or buying property within Jammu and Kashmir is a violation of fundamental rights under Articles 14, 19 and 21 of the Constitution.
In the long running history over this disputed Article 35A, there have been many twists and turns. Moreover, it is well-known that Rohingya illegals secured PRCs in Mehbooba Mufti's regime. In late November last year, the State Administrative Council (SAC) headed by Jammu & Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik repealed the Jammu and Kashmir State Lands (Vesting of Ownership to the Occupants) Act, 2001, popularly known as the Roshni Act, because it had "failed to realise the desired objectives and there were also reports of misuse of some its provisions".
The Roshni Act envisaged the transfer of ownership rights of state land to its occupants, subject to the payment of a cost, as determined by the government. It was enacted by Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah's government, and it set 1990 as the cutoff for encroachment on state land. The government's target was to earn Rs 25,000 crore by transferring 20 lakh kanals of state land to existing occupants against payment at market rates.
The government said the revenue generated would be spent on commissioning hydroelectric power projects, hence the name "Roshni". The SAC has ordered cancellation of all pending applications seeking vesting of ownership rights of state lands to their occupants. However, cases where such rights have already been transferred will hold.
In 2005, Mufti Mohammad Sayeed's PDP-Congress government relaxed the cutoff year to 2004. During the tenure of Ghulam Nabi Azad, who replaced Sayeed as Chief Minister under a three-year rotation agreement, the cutoff was relaxed further to 2007. The government also gave ownership rights of agricultural land to farmers occupying it for free, charging them only Rs 100 per kanal as documentation fee.
Powerful vested interest hijacked the scheme. In 2014, a report by the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) estimated that against the targeted Rs 25,000 crore, only Rs 76 crore had been realised from the transfer of encroached land between 2007 and 2013, thus defeating the purpose of the legislation. The report blamed irregularities, including arbitrary reduction in prices fixed by a standing committee, and said this was done to benefit politicians and affluent people.
In February 2018, the PDP tried to unilaterally allow Gujjar-Bakarwal squatters on forest land to become de facto owners and ignored opposition from the BJP. In November 2018, the High Court restrained all beneficiaries of the Roshni scheme from selling or carrying out any other transaction in respect of the land transferred to them.
A second petition filed by Jammu and Kashmir native Charu Wali Khanna has challenged Article 35A for protecting certain provisions of the Jammu and Kashmir Constitution, which restrict the basic right to property if a native woman marries a man not holding a permanent resident certificate. "Her children are denied a permanent resident certificate, thereby considering them illegitimate," the petition said.
Despite chairman's ousting, for all branches of J&K Bank, it's business as usual
Jammu/Srinagar: It was business as usual at all the branches of J&K Bank in Jammu and Kashmir and outside on Monday -- two days after the searches carried out by the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) at the bank's corporate headquarters in Srinagar city.
ACB searches followed the sudden sacking of Chairman Parvez Ahmed by the state government on Saturday.
R.K. Chibber, who chaired a board meeting of the bank's directors on Saturday, was appointed as the interim Chairman.
An ACB press release said that the two-day long search operation ended on Sunday.
ACB officials said documentary evidence regarding the mismanagement, nepotism and corruption by the ousted chairman were collected and investigation was on.
All branches of the bank started their operations normally on Monday. Customers transacted, deposit and loan business at the branches in both the Valley and the Jammu region as usual.
Employees of the bank have said in a statement that their loyalties are with the institution and its progress and development and not with any person or his position.
Kashmir traders and manufacturers association, headed by Muhammad Yasin Khan, has expressed confidence in the financial stability and the contribution of the bank in the development of the state as its premier financial institution.
There has been a dip in the bank's share value when the NSE opened on Monday morning. Bank officials have expressed confidence that the share will pick up quickly as the day progresses.
The Jammu and Kashmir Governor’s administration Saturday removed Parvez Ahmad as the chairman of the bank and appointed its executive president R K Chibber as the interim chairman.
ArjunPandit wrote:srin can you please post ur article here..can't read toi from here..
Sacked J&K Bank chairperson Parvez Ahmad Nengroo is alleged to have sanctioned loans worth hundreds of crores of rupees in brazen violation of guidelines and standard operating procedures to clients recommended by former minister in the PDP government Imran Aftab Ansari and People’s Conference chief Sajjad Lone, investigating agencies have found.
The irregularities the J&K anti-corruption bureau (ACB) is now probing include how Shamsuddin Andrabi, the Class 12 pass brother of ex-PDP minister Farooq Andrabi and former CM Mehbooba Mufti’s uncle, was appointed directly as manager. Andrabi is currently posted in the bank’s Bhaderwah branch. Mehbooba on Sunday said the manner in which Nengroo was sacked was “quite disconcerting” and “disgraceful”.
The ACB seized around 300 files pertaining to illegal/fraudulent appointments in the bank by Nengroo during PDP rule in the state during raids led by bureau director Anand Jain.
Among several allegations of nepotism, corruption and financial irregularities against Nengroo, who was removed on Saturday, which are now under the lens are appointment of several members of his extended family, some of whom came to occupy key positions in the bank. The ACB is probing how two J&K Bank branches — in Karin (Shopian) and Wuyan (Pulwama) — are operating from Nengroo’s personal premises and those of his in-laws. Both locations are highly unsuitable, sources in the agencies told TOI.
ACB sleuths are investigating how Nengroo, whose registered date of birth as per his service and school records is April 21, 1963, passed the matriculation exam at the age of 14 years in November 1977. With him at the helm, renovation of hundreds of bank branches were allotted to select individuals for Rs 50 lakh to Rs 1.5 crore a branch. The actual cost was found to be only 30% of the money paid. Overdrafts of hefty amounts were allegedly released to defaulters who had run up debts with other banks. Many such accounts turned NPAs. Also, one-time settlements were done with select defaulters, allegedly against huge kickbacks.
Investigation sources claimed Rs 8 crore was spent under CSR on beautification of Royal Spring Golf Course, which is a rendezvous of the elite and has no utility for common people. There were purportedly huge variations in cost-income ratio as expenditure during Nengroo’s time spiralled. Paid advertisements worth Rs 10-30 lakh were released to Kashmir Life to highlight the state budget, which officials now allege nobody saw.
Sources said Nengroo’s rise was meteoric, from a chartered accountant to J&K Bank CMD in a span of 15 years. He got his nephew Muzaffar, considered his key pointman, posted in his office immediately after taking over as chairman. Nengroo’s daughter-in-law Shazia Ambreen was appointed as a probationary officer and is currently heading the Hazratbal branch. J&K Bank’s personnel manager Aslam Ganai, believed to be close to Nengroo, allegedly had a role in transfers within the bank and the decisions were not necessarily in keeping with the bank’s interests, a source said. Two of Nengroo’s relatives — Asif Beg and M Fahim — are overseeing HR and Board affairs, including credit proposals, while two other kin — Faheem Nengroo and Taseen Nengroo — are posted in the ex-chairman’s office.
More than a dozen men armed with assault rifles marched in the backdrop of snowscape in a video circulated online, announcing them as the soldiers for Ghazwa-e-Hind, the prophesied battle for India in Islamic traditions. A subsequent frame closes in on three jihadists, the snowscape missing, two flags behind them announced their allegiance to Al-Qaeda in the Indian subcontinent, or the AQIS.
The jihadist in the middle, unmasked but his face pixelated beyond recognition, identified himself as Faisal Ishfaq Bhat, a resident of Srinagar in the Kashmir Valley, and indicated that he was in Afghanistan. The nearly thirty minute-long address that used Quranic justification for jihad but sharply turned attention to a south Asian sentiment increasingly finding resonance in Kashmir: Pakistan’s betrayal of jihad for its own interests.
It was this betrayal that was cited by Musa when he rebelled against the pro-Pakistan Hizbul Mujahideen and aligned his splinter group with the Afghanistan-based AQIS, naming it the Ansar Ghazwatul Hind. The video featuring Bhat along with the a rare audio eulogy for Zakir Musa released separately, last week, by senior jihadist leader of the AQIS, Ustadh Usama Mehmood, is the strongest evidence of a link between Kashmiri and global jihadists.
Mehmood said that Musa sought guidance from “jihadi scholars in matters of jihad”, an indication that Ansar chief was in contact with the Al Qaeda, at least in matters of consultation and advice, and ranked the Kashmiri jihadist at par with Osama Bin Laden, the mastermind behind the September 2001 attacks in the United States, and the Afghan Taliban's Mullah Muhammad Omar, a rare honour for a jihadist.
Betrayed by Pakistan, jihadists seek alliances in Kashmir, Afghanistan; recent audio eulogising Zakir Musa highlights global links of militancy
A geopolitical game
Portrayed as the fortress of Islam in south Asia, Pakistan was a safe haven for jihadist groups operating in the region, primarily focussed on Afghanistan and Kashmir. However, following an increasing scrutiny in the wake of the September 2001 attacks in the United States, Pakistan cracked the whip on jihadist outfits, including those operating in Kashmir, leading to a sense of betrayal.
The same year, Bhat had crossed over to Pakistan and, in what could be called a case of the grass seeming greener on the other side, began being disillusioned. “The reality about the (Pakistan) army that aides the jihad in Kashmir and the ISI began to be revealed to us from the moment we reached (Pakistan),” he said. “We also saw how much Islam was in practice here.”
Claiming to have witnessed closely how jihadist outfits were “helpless” before and taken “hostage” by the “hypocrite” Pakistani intelligence services, Bhat was in a state of “mixed feelings”.
National interest and foreign policy was “dearer” to Pakistan than the actual objectives of jihad, according to Bhat. He said that Pakistan saw jihad as merely “a policy for international bank balances and strategic depth”, and a policy aimed at, among other regional objectives, keeping pressure on India. “It’s a game, a part of the policy,” Bhat denounced Pakistan. “To achieve these goals they need human resources, they need foot soldiers. And for that, they used a cause for which the conscientious Muslims of the Ummah could be manipulated.”
Bhat said that his group was prevented from carrying out attacks in Kashmir as it would lead to “deterioration of the political situation in Pakistan”. If the numbers of jihadists killed in Kashmir is an indicator of Pakistan controlling the tempo, according to the figures compiled by the South Asia Terrorism Portal, from 2,850 jihadists killed by Indian forces in 2001, the numbers fell to 84 in 2012. It is around this time that, Bhat said, Pakistan’s intelligence services caused rifts within the various jihadist outfits operating in Kashmir and the subsequent breakaway factions, many on sectarian lines, exposing internal differences leading to infighting. By 2013, the number of active jihadists in Kashmir nosedived to only about 78, the lowest since the eruption of violence.
Resonance in Kashmir
In the aftermath of the September 2001 attacks and Pakistan’s involvement in the “global war on terror”, faultlines emerged in the regional jihad and the emerging splinter cells stood against their once-patrons. At the same time, Kashmir-focussed groups made public their resentment albeit without crossing red lines.
Feeble frictions began emerging on the ground since Adil Mir took control of the 'jihad' in 2010 and later the death of his cousin Burhan Wani in 2016 galvanised the resurgence of a strong sympathy for jihadists and mobilised the civilian population against the Indian state, taking away the levers of control from Pakistan as smaller modules of the jihadists outfits also began operating independently.
The general public in the Valley and sympathisers of the jihadist groups remained isolated from these events post the September 2001 attacks owing to the lack of reporting in the local press, that is seen by observers as inclined towards Pakistani interests. The emergence of social media ensured that Musa’s rebellion could not be brushed under the carpet. At the same time, the Islamic State emerged, professing links to the Afghanistan-based divison of the jihadist outfit that had overtaken Al-Qaeda as the leading global jihadist outfit since 2014.
Musa’s rebellion paved the way for many other jihadists to defect to his AQIS-affiliated outfit. “Whoever gives pinpoint (locations), becomes dear to Allah...I don't understand what is going on,” rued a Pakistani jihadist known as Abu Dujana in a 2017 conversation with Zakir Musa, recorded some time after the latter’s rebellion against the pro-Pakistan leadership in May, but a month before the announcement of the Ansar Ghazwatul Hind in July and released three months after Dujana’s death in August. Dujana was among the first jihadists in Kashmir to defect to Al-Qaeda.
Another Pakistani jihadist broke his silence to join Musa and was eventually killed in a gunfight on the outskirts of Srinagar in March 2018. In a video released after his death, Abu Hamas said that he wanted to “free the jihad” from “taghuti nizam” — man-made ruling systems considered idolatrous — after witnessing Pakistan’s duplicity since his recruitment in 2012. Later in the video, Hamas spoke of doubts over a crackdown in Pakistan against those “who speak of khilafat and shariat” while Kashmiri jihadists who were loyal to Pakistan’s interests were receiving “security and protocol” from the Pakistani state. “A lot of questions would come, but we would console ourselves saying we were going to help the oppressed in Kashmir,” he said.
Hamas mentioned senior figures of the Hizbul Mujahideen and Jamaat-e-Islami based in Pakistan having defected to Al-Qaeda as reassurance for his decision. Prominent among those who defected was the Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir-based Hizb trainer who became a senior Al Qaeda operative, Ahsan Aziz. Hamas also cited another slain jihadist, Afzal, who defected from the Al-Badr over apprehensions that the jihad in Kashmir had been reduced to “agency work”.
A call to arms
“There are attempts to end this jihad and put the mujahideen in cold storage,” Musa had said in a 15-minute video released on 7 April this year, attacking the Pakistan premier Imran Khan’s statement on “dialogue on terrorism” in the wake of the Pulwama suicide bombing, the most significant attack in the three decade-long violence in Kashmir. Buoyed by the perseverance of the Afghan Taliban and the United States' pulling out of troops from the region, Musa also mentioned that more jihadists were joining them with each passing day.
In an audio released after Zakir Musa's death, the militant leader is heard imploring a Hizb jihadist to seek knowledge even if he does not wish to quit his outfit. His advice to the Hizb jihadist was, "Find the truth, without looking up to individuals, and you will yourself see the righteous (path)."
In the AQIS eulogy for Musa, Mehmood said that the “mujahideen in Afghanistan were overwhelmed with grief” over his death and that now was a test of faith given that “Pakistan had long traded Kashmiri Muslims” for its interests. If the Kashmir jihad was dependent on Pakistan intelligence services, Mehmood said, “azadi would never be achieved even if sacrifices go one for a thousand years”.
Bhat’s first public statement, too, echoed Musa and Mehmood: “We see in the mujahideen in general and their leaders in particular, a yearning to free Kashmir and enforce sharia,” he says. “The mujahideen here are desperate to meet their brothers and in the near future will join their brothers in Kashmir and will target the oppressive (Indian) army and police from the trenches of Kashmir”.
Sources said that around 6.00 pm militants triggered an IED planted on the roadside in Aarihal when a vehicle of 44 RR was passing from there, causing injuries to at least five soldiers. “The IED exploded under a Casper ( bullet and mine-proof vehic...
Nazia Erum, media and advocacy manager at Amnesty International's India terrorist chapter, said on Wednesday authorities cited "prevailing law and order situation" in the restive region to deny permission for the event in Srinagar.
ramana wrote:The Pulwama master mind was killed in a firefight.
ramana wrote:I have theory.
I think the Balakot strike eliminated the top and middle rung of JeM leadership and whats left are the low level dregs and Masood Azhar.
The consequence is HuM wants to seek some accommodation with GOI and Hurrirats are already there as Governor Satyapal Malik indicated.
This has led the Pak ISI to unleash their jackals of war AQIS on the HuM and this is the cause of the recent inter terrorist fights in Kashmir.