Lok Sabha By-Poll Won’t Be Held On Islamabad Seat: Official

Srinagar, April 29 (Kashmir Voice): In occupied Kashmir, an Indian government official citing unfavorable conditions has said that so-called by-elections for Lok Sabha seat in Islamabad constituency will not be held until the next general elections scheduled to be held in April next year.
According to media sources, this is for the first time that unfavorable situation in Jammu and Kashmir has forced the Indian government to cancel altogether a by-election on a parliamentary seat lying vacant for the past 21 months, reported local media. The official said a periodical review of the situation in the constituency was being conducted, and the authorities would not recommend to the Election Commission of India to conduct by-poll there. Four districts—Islamabad, Shopian, Pulwama and Kulgam—in the constituency are at the vanguard of armed resistance backed by unprecedented public support, which has virtually left pro-India politics in these areas irrelevant. On the by-poll day in Srinagar on April 9, last year, protesters clashed with the Indian troops at several polling stations to enforce boycott of elections. As many as nine protesters were shot dead by the troops, prompting the government to cancel by-poll in Islamabad scheduled on April 12 as it feared more intense protests there. Since 2016 uprising that was triggered by killing of popular mujahid commander Burhan Wani, there has been no let up in protests in the four southern districts. Sixty of the more 100 civilians killed during the uprising and hundreds of those blinded by pellet ammunition belong to these districts. Today, the region is almost out of bounds for pro-India politicians who could not dare to hold political rallies, not to talk of carrying out election campaigns. The seat had fallen vacant on 4 July 2016 after puppet Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti resigned. The decision to cancel the Islamabad by-poll comes at a time when the prevailing situation has already forced it to delay conduct of Panchayat polls, which are due since July 2016, to end of this year. KASHMIR VOICE

Gilani Is Free To Move’ Assurance By Police Questioned

Srinagar, April 29 (Kashmir Voice): In occupied Kashmir, the All Parties Hurriyat Conference has questioned the assurance by the police that the ailing party Chairman Syed Ali Gilani and other Hurriyat leaders are free to go anywhere.
According to media sources, the APHC in a statement issued in Srinagar said, “There is no constitutional and moral justification to curb his peaceful political activities and stop him from performing religious obligations,” adding that his residence had been turned into a sub-jail. The statement came in the backdrop of imposition of curbs on Syed Ali Gilani to offer congregational and Friday prayers. The statement talked about curbs on freedom of other leaders of the Joint Resistance Leadership — Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Muhammad Yasin Malik. “The resistance leaders are barred from performing religious obligations which is interference in religious matters,” said the statement. Soon after the authorities lifted curbs on Gilani’s movement last month he had addressed prayers at local mosque and told New Delhi about its temporary rule in Kashmir. Less than a week later he and Mirwaiz and Malik were put under house arrest to prevent them from traveling to southern parts of Kashmir to show solidarity with families of 17 youth killed in April 1 firing by Indian troops on protesters. Today, a mobile bunker with alert CRPF troopers remain stationed outside the residence of Gilani. “They didn’t allow him to come out to offer prayers. Their assurance about freedom of Mr. Gilani and other leaders was a bundle of lies,” said a senior APHC leader. KASHMIR VOICE

Kashmiri Students In Indian Cities Being Harassed: APHC

Srinagar, April 29 (Kashmir Voice): In occupied Kashmir, the All Parties Hurriyat Conference (APHC) has said that Kashmiri students, pursuing studies in different states and cities of India are being intimidated and harassed.
According to media sources, the APHC spokesman in a statement issued in Srinagar said pursuing education is a basic right; however, Kashmiri students are suspected everywhere and beleaguered simply because of their Kashmiri origin. Strongly condemning the unabated arrest and harassment of leaders and activists, he said, “Such methods cannot weaken the will of Hurriyat leadership and activists.” “The arrest of Ashiq Hussain Narchoor, Asif Ahmad Dada and Ashfaq Ahmad Kotwal in Islamabad town is unjustified. Ashiq Hussain is a political worker and in no way is related to militancy while as the two-detained youth are not connected to any political party,” he added. Decrying the detention of political workers and civilians on one pretext or the other, the spokesman said: “youth are being arrested on fake and fabricated charges just for material gains and promotions and slapping PSAs on Hurriyat leaders and activists have always been a tool of the rulers to try and force the people and leadership into submission.” KASHMIR VOICE

IOK HR Boy Seeks Report from Officials in 2016 Killings

Srinagar, April 29 (Kashmir Voice): In occupied Kashmir, the Human Rights Commission has sought a detailed report from the puppet authorities about killings of Kashmiris in 2016.
According to media sources, notices have been issued to Chief Secretary (CS) and Director General of Police and have been directed to file a detailed compliance report about the 2016 civilian killings before the Commission. Kashmir witnessed mass killings in 2016 after the death of prominent Hizb Commander, Burhan Wani. The Commission’s response came on a petition, filed by Chairman of International Forum for Justice, Muhammad Ahsan Untoo. The petition reads: “Besides killings in 2016, countless civilians were severely injured, disabled and even blinded due to use of excessive force including pellet guns and bullets by security forces. Killing-spree resulted into a vicious cycle of more protests, killings and excessive use of force.” The petition further reads: “The killing of civilians in Kashmir by forces is unjustified and the perpetrators should not be pardoned and must be dealt strongly within the realms of law. The civilians were intentionally targeted with live bullets and pellets.” The petitioner, Muhammad Ahsan Untoo in his petition prayed that the Commission should pass instant and appropriate orders for the investigation of the civilian killings during 2016 uprising and allow proper investigation to find out the reason behind the killings. Besides the petitioner, Additional Advocate General MM Khan and Chief Prosecuting Officer, Mumtaz Salim were present during the hearing. The Commission listed the case for next hearing on June 2 this year. KASHMIR VOICE

Mujahideen Clear Traffic Jam in Kulgam, Say Locals

Srinagar, April 29 (Kashmir Voice): In occupied Kashmir, residents of Frisal village of Kulgam have said that they were caught by surprise when they saw mujahideen alighted from their vehicle and started to manage traffic on the street.
According to media sources, a witness told media in Srinagar that “In the afternoon traffic on the Frisal-Yaripora road came to halt due to a jam near Frisal. As the people were trying to clear it, some three armed mujahideen suddenly came out of a vehicle they were travelling in and started managing the traffic.” Villagers said the mujahideen took little time to clear the road and people raised pro-freedom and pro-mujahideen slogans as they left the scene. Kulgam district is considered a hotbed of anti-India movement in southern Kashmir. During the 2016 uprising, mujahideen had openly addressed pro-freedom rallies and even celebrated Pakistan’s Independence Day by unfurling its flag in a huge rally in Redwani village of Qaimoh, not far from the other day’s traffic scene. KASHMIR VOICE

BCI Report Abuse of Its Mandate and Position: P V Dinesh

Jammu, April 29 (Kashmir Voice): In occupied Kashmir, the Bar Council of India’s report to Supreme Court is copy of counter-affidavit filed by Jammu Bar Association in the apex court, says P V Dinesh, the top Court lawyer who had drawn attention of the court towards obstruction caused by Kathua lawyers to prevent Crime Branch (CB) from filing charge-sheet in rape and murder of a child in the district.
According to media sources, in its report submitted to the Indian Supreme Court, the BCI gave a clean chit to Kathua lawyers who had themselves claimed that they prevented the probing agency from filing the charge-sheet. The BCI panel has gone to the extent of justifying the demand of CBI probe into the horrific crime. Talking to media, Dinesh said the BCI report was “abuse of its mandate and position”. “This report is nothing but a counter affidavit filed by Jammu and Kashmir High Court Bar Association in the Supreme Court. There is no much difference between the two,” he added. The Jammu High Court Bar Association had filed a counter affidavit in the Court after the top Court sought their response on conduct of the lawyers. inesh, who opposed the report in the Court, said the BCI has gone beyond its brief as its mandate was confined to look into conduct of the lawyers. “The BCI was supposed to look into whether the lawyers prevented the crime branch from filing the charge-sheet. They are not supposed to look into whether the demand for CBI inquiry is justified,” the lawyer said. “The BCI committee has no business to justify the need for CBI inquiry. That was not their mandate.” The BCI report has come under scathing criticism in the Supreme Court, with lawyers accusing it of exceeding its brief. KASHMIR VOICE