Govt to Hold High-Level Meet on J&K Situation on Tuesday

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan and Army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa met on Thursday, 22 August and discussed matters of national security and the situation in Kashmir.

Meanwhile, human rights experts at the United Nations have called on the Indian government to end the communication blockage in Kashmir.

Earlier in the day, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan, in an interview to The New York Times, said that his country is no longer interested in engaging in a dialogue with India.

The Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) staged a protest at Jantar Mantar in Delhi for "release of leaders detained in Jammu and Kashmir". Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad, activist Shehla Rashid, etc were also present at the spot.

  • Advisor to J&K Governor to meet public on Friday, 23 August, to hear their grievances
  • Central Kashmir DIG VK Birdi said that no major law and order breach took place on 21 August
  • Pakistan Foreign Affairs Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi on 20 August said that they will take the Kashmir issue to the International Court of Justice
  • US President Donald Trump said that he will discuss the Kashmir situation with PM Modi at the G7 Summit in France this weekend

MHA to Hold High-Level Meet on J&K on Tuesday

The Union Home Ministry will hold a high-level meeting on Jammu and Kashmir on Tuesday next week, said a Ministry source on Thursday, reported IANS.

The meeting would be attended by secretaries of government of India and would be chaired by newly appointed Union Home Secretary Ajay Kumar Bhalla.

Imran Khan Holds Meeting of Kashmir Core Group

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan chaired a meeting of the Kashmir Core Group to discuss efforts to highlight the issue on the international level.

“The main focus was on Pakistan's extensive political and diplomatic outreach and efforts to raise the international community's awareness about Kashmir,” according to a statement issued by the Prime Minister's Office.

It added that the “serious risks for peace and security posed by India's illegal and unilateral actions of August 5” were also discussed.

Abrogating Article 370 Aimed at Changing Demography of J&K: CPI(M)

“The move to abrogate provisions of Article 370 was aimed at changing the demography of muslim-majority Jammu and Kashmir,” said the CPI(M).

Speaking at the release of a book, 'Fraud on Constitution, Kashmir Betrayed', CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury said the move to revoke the special status of Jammu and Kashmir was “undemocratic” and “unconstitutional”.

Pak PM, Army Chief Discuss Kashmir Situation

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan and Army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa met today and discussed matters of national security and the situation in Kashmir.

This was the Pakistan Army chief's first meeting with Khan since he got a three-year extension of tenure. The extension, announced on Monday, was granted by Prime Minister Khan, citing the “regional security environment.”

Farooq Khan Meets Individuals, Delegations to Address Grievances

Department of Information and Public Relations, Jammu and Kashmir Government said, “Farooq Khan, adviser to Jammu and Kashmir Governor, has met delegations, individuals at Governor’s Grievance Cell.”

He added, “Issues of dumping of municipal waste in some areas and service matters were raised. Grievances of the pharmacists were immediately forwarded for redressal.”

No Clarity on Release of Political Leaders in J&K

Jammu and Kashmir's political leaders, including former chief ministers Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti, are likely to be in custody for some more time with officials saying that there is no clarity on their release as the Valley continues to be on edge.

A senior government official also made it clear that any decision on the release of the people under detention in Jammu and Kashmir will be taken by the local administration depending on the ground situation, reported PTI.

J&K Special Status Ended After Life-Long Struggle of 3 Generations of BJS, BJP Leaders: Union Min

Union Minister Jitendra Singh said, “Three generations of Bharatiya Jana Sangh (BJS) and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders had struggled life long to get the special status of Jammu and Kashmir revoked.”

Singh added that the abrogation of the provisions of Article 370 of the Constitution was on the agenda of the BJS since its origin and the first major agitation for it in post-independent India was launched by its leader Syama Prasad Mookerjee.

UN Experts Urge India to End Communication Shutdown in Kashmir

Human rights experts at the United Nations called on the government of India to end "the crackdown on freedom of expression, access to information and peaceful protests imposed in Kashmir this month".

The experts have expressed concerns that the measures, which were imposed after the government revoked Article 370, "would exacerbate tensions in the region".

700 Eminent Kashmiri Pandits Support Centre's Decision on Article 370

Convenor of Panun Kashmir, an organisation advocating the cause of displaced Kashmiri Pandits, Agnishekhar released a memorandum in support of the abrogation of provisions of Article 370 and said that over 700 eminent Kashmiri Pandits have endorsed it.

He claimed that all Kashmiri Pandits are on one page in support of the Centre scrapping provisions of Article 370 “to pave the way for a new dawn of free environment in Jammu and Kashmir”.

'Allow Political Parties to Visit J&K': Azad

Senior Congress leader and former J&K Chief Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad asked the government to allow all political parties to visit Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh in order to see the ground reality.

Azad made the demand in his speech at the DMK-led all-party demonstration in Jantar Mantar against the detainment of political leaders in Jammu-Kashmir in the light of the abrogation of Article 370.

Shehla Rashid Reasserts Claims on J&K Situation; Says Will Give Proof

Political activist Shehla Rashid said that she stands by her comments about alleged human rights violations in Jammu and Kashmir and will give proof if the Indian Army initiates an inquiry into her claims.

On 18 August, Shehla Rashid had claimed that the Indian Army was indiscriminately picking up men, raiding houses and torturing people in Jammu and Kashmir.

'No Point in Talking to India': Pak PM Imran Khan

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan, in an interview to The New York Times, has said that his country is no longer interested in engaging in a dialogue with India.

"There is no point in talking to them. I mean, I have done all the talking. Unfortunately, now when I look back, all the overtures that I was making for peace and dialogue, I think they took it for appeasement. There is nothing more that we can do," said Khan.

Satya Pal Malik Directs Finance Dept to Place Rs 5 Cr in 'Back to Village Programme'

Governor Satya Pal Malik directed the Finance Department to place Rs 5 crores per district and Rs. 5 crores per Divisional Commissioner to start work on a minimum of ‘one work per Panchayat’ identified in 'Back to Village' programme, in Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh.

Guv Satya Pal Malik Reviews Law & Order State in J&K, Ladakh

Governor Satya Pal Malik reviewed the status of security and law and order situation in Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh, in a meeting at Raj Bhavan in Srinagar yesterday, reported ANI.

Opposition Parties Demand Release of Leaders Detained in J&K

Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) led All-Party Demonstration, demanding the "release of leaders detained in Jammu and Kashmir" was held at Jantar Mantar. Congress leaders Karti Chidambaram and Ghulam Nabi Azad, RJD leader Manoj Jha, and others were also present at the protest.

Activist Shehla Rashid, who recently courted controversy for her tweet that put allegations of grave misconduct and torture by the Indian Army in Kashmir was also present at the protest.

Rashid, when asked about her tweet and to provide evidence for her remarks, said that she will provide evidence only when the Indian Army initiates an inquiry.

Expect India To Adopt Just Policy Towards People Of Kashmir: Iran Leader

Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei, the Supreme leader of Iran, on Wednesday, 21 August expressed concern over the situation of Muslims in Kashmir.

Khamenei said Iran expects the Indian government to "adopt a just policy towards the people of Kashmir."

"We're concerned about Muslims' situation in Kashmir. We have good relations with India, but we expect the Indian government to adopt a just policy towards the noble people of Kashmir and prevent the oppression & bullying of Muslims in this region," he tweeted.

The Iranian leader also blamed the UK for the current situation in Kashmir.

Ajit Doval Visits Russia, Holds Talks With Counterpart Amid J&K Decision

In the backdrop of renewed focus on Kashmir issue, National Security Advisor Ajit Doval visited Moscow on Thursday and held talks with his Russian counterpart Nikolai Patrushev during which both sides underlined support for principles of sovereignty, territorial integrity and non-interference of third parties.

The reference of non-interference by third parties is seen as Russia strongly coming out in support of India's position on Jammu and Kashmir.

BJP Leader Seeks Development of Temples in J&K

JP vice president and in-charge for the upcoming Assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir Avinash Rai Khanna on Wednesday advocated development of Sudhmahadev and Mantalai temples in Udhampur district to boost religious tourism and generate employment for the youth.

Khanna called for the development of the two temples in separate letters addressed to Governor Satya Pal Malik and Union Tourism Minister Prahlad Singh Patel, according to a party release.

'Athletes to Get Good Infrastructure in J&K': Mary Kom

Indian Boxer and Rajya Sabha MP Mary Kom on Wednesday welcomed the abrogation of Article 370, saying athletes will now benefit from good infrastructure provided by the Centre.

Advisor to J&K Governor to Hear Public Grievances on 23 Aug

Kewal Kumar Sharma, Advisor to Jammu & Kashmir Governor, will meet the public on Friday, 23 August to hear their grievances at Governor’s Grievance Cell, in Srinagar, reports ANI.

'No Major Law & Order Breach Today': Central Kashmir DIG

Addressing a press conference, the Central Kashmir DIG VK Birdi said, “No major law and order incident observed today. All those areas where relaxation was extended, they also behaved normally. In some pockets, there were stray incidents of stone pelting.”

Meanwhile SS Asgar, Director of Information & Public Relations in J&K said some private schools in Srinagar have resumed classes and all schools in Jammu are functioning normally.

BJP Gears Up for Organisational Polls in J&K

The Jammu and Kashmir unit of the ruling BJP is going to initiate the process for its organisational polls with a meeting of senior leaders on Thursday, state election in-charge S Varinderjeet Singh said on Wednesday, PTI reported.

"The election process will start on Thursday and the entire exercise will take about four months. It will include the election for the post of booth president, mandal president, district President and finally, the state president," Singh said.

Srinagar, Jammu Mayors Get MoS Status

The mayors of Srinagar and Jammu civic bodies have been granted status equivalent to that of Minister of State (MoS), according to an official order.

The order, issued by additional secretary Subash Chhibber on Tuesday, said the hospitality and protocol department shall make necessary insertion in the J&K State Warrant of Precedence with the approval of the competent authority.

"Sanction is hereby accorded to the grant of status equivalent to Minister of State (MoS) to the Mayors of SMC (Srinagar Municipal Corporation) and JMC (Jammu Municipal Corporation) within their territorial jurisdiction," the order said.

The elections for the municipal corporations were held in four phases in October last year after a gap of 13 years.

People's Conference leader Junaid Maattu and BJP leader Chander Mohan Gupta are the mayors of SMC and JMC, respectively.

Article 370 India's Internal Issue: Bangladesh Calls for Peace, Stability

Bangladesh maintains that Article 370's abrogation by Indian Govt is an internal issue of India. Bangladesh has always advocated, as matter of principle, that maintaining regional peace and stability, and development should be a priority for all countries.

France Calls For Restraint, De-Escalation Over J&K

French Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, Jean-Yves Le Drian, on Tuesday 20 August held discussions with Shah Mehmood Qureshi, Pakistan's foreign minister over the phone.

The French foreign minister held France's constant position on Kashmir - it is up to the two countries, under the framework of their bilateral political dialogue, to resolve this dispute so as to establish lasting peace.

He further reiterated France's call to the parties to exercice restraint, de-escalation and ease the situation in the valley.

Trump to Discuss Kashmir With PM Modi, Calls It a 'Complicated Situation'

US President Donald Trump on Tuesday said he would discuss the tense situation in Kashmir with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi when they meet at the G7 Summit in France during this weekend.

"“I will be with Prime Minister Modi. I’ll be with him over the weekend in France. I think, we are helping (resolve the tense) situation (between India and Pakistan).”" - US President Donald Trump

In an interview to NBC news, the US President regarded Kashmir to be a ‘complicated situation, that has a lot to do with religion’ reported ANI.

"“Kashmir is a very complicated place. You have the Hindus, and you have the Muslims, and I wouldn’t say they get along so great. And that’s what you have right now.”" - US President Donald Trump

The development came a day after Trump spoke separately to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Pakistani counterpart Imran Khan in his bid to ease fresh Indo-Pak tensions after India revoked the special status of Jammu and Kashmir.

Encounter Between Security Forces, Terrorists Underway in Baramulla in J-K

An encounter between security forces and terrorists was underway in Baramulla in Jammu and Kashmir on Tuesday night, officials said.

This was the first encounter between security forces and terrorists in Kashmir since July 27, they said.

Kashmir First Line of Defence for Pak: PM Khan

Kashmir is the first line of defence for Pakistan, Prime Minister Imran Khan said on Tuesday, 20 August, as his Cabinet decided to highlight the situation in Kashmir during the weeks leading to the address of his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi to the United Nations General Assembly next month.

Firdous Ashiq Awan, the Special Assistant to the Pakistan Prime Minister on information, said that Khan during the Cabinet meeting emphasised that Kashmir was the first line of defence for Pakistan.

She noted that Modi would address to the UN General Assembly on September 27 ahead of Khan.

Boris Johnson Tells Modi Kashmir a Bilateral Issue

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Tuesday, 20 August,made clear to Prime Minister Narendra Modi that Kashmir remains a bilateral matter between India and Pakistan as far as the UK's view is concerned, during a telephone call between the two leaders.

The conversation, part of a series of similar telephone calls being undertaken by Johnson with world leaders since he took charge at Downing Street last month, covered the current situation in Kashmir alongside a discussion on the importance of the India-UK partnership.

In relation of India-UK bilateral ties, Johnson and Modi agreed on the importance of the partnership and the need to build on it further, particularly through trade and economic ties and through the living bridge that links our countries.

Govt Notifies Schedule of Hearing of Public Grievances

The Government on Tuesday, 20 August, notified the schedule of hearing of public grievances by the advisors to the governor at both the capital cities of Srinagar and Jammu.

As per the order issued, all the advisors shall be hearing public grievances on days allotted to them every week.

'Considerable Improvement in Attendance in Schools': J&K Principal Secy

A day after schools and government offices in Kashmir opened after a two-week shutdown, J&K Principal Secretary Rohit Kansal on Tuesday said there has been "considerable improvement in attendance of children," according to ANI.

“Govt offices have opened and they are reporting more than normal attendance,” Kansal added.

United States Back India’s Stand on Article 370

US Secretary of Defence Mark Esper on Tuesday, appreciated India’s position that the recent developments in Jammu and Kashmir are an internal matter and expressed hope that any issue between India and Pakistan will be resolved bilaterally, ANI reported.

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh held a telephonic conversation with Esper and raised issues of cross-border terrorism and appreciated the US' support for India's efforts to maintain peace and stability in the region.

‘Will Take Kashmir Issue to ICJ’: Pakistan Foreign Minister

Pakistan Foreign Minister on Tuesday said they will take the Kashmir issue to International Court of Justice, according to Reuters.

“An in-principle decision has been taken to take the issue of Kashmir to the International Court of Justice,” Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi told ARY News TV.

'It Is a Sign of Intolerance': Congress Leader Ghulam Nabi Azad

Senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad expressed indignation on Tuesday after he was stopped at the Jammu airport and sent back to Delhi.

“It's not right for democracy. If mainstream political parties won’t visit, then who will go? Three former chief ministers of J&K are already under house arrest and one former CM is not being allowed to enter the state. It is a sign of intolerance,” Azad said.

'What Was the Need for Modi to Call Trump?': Asaduddin Owaisi

AIMIM President Asaduddin Owaisi, on Tuesday, questioned the intervention of the US in the matter.

"Since the very beginning, we have been saying that Kashmir is a bilateral issue. India has a very consistent stand on this. Then what was the need for PM Modi to call US President Donald Trump and complain about it?" Owaisi said, according to ANI.

'Inform PCR About Rumour Mongers': J-K Police to Public

Jammu and Kashmir Police appealed to the people to inform the police control room (PCR) regarding any person spreading rumours or malicious content, officials said on Tuesday.

The citizens may otherwise contact the nearby police station or police post where the personnel have been instructed to act promptly without any delay against such elements, officials said.

Twitter Denies Allegations of Bias for Suspending Pak Accounts

Twitter, which suspended over 200 accounts of Pakistanis posting about the Kashmir issue, has denied allegations of bias by Islamabad, saying that it enforced policies judiciously and ensured impartiality to all users, PTI reported.

Responding to allegations of censorship and biased moderation on its platform, a Twitter spokesperson told the Dawn newspaper that they were founded on the principles of free expression and there was no political bias.

“We believe people on all sides of an issue have a fundamental right to discuss them within the boundaries of our policies, which prohibit terrorism, hateful conduct, platform manipulation and abuse. At Twitter no one is above our rules,” the spokesperson said.

Congress Leader Ghulam Nabi Azad Stopped at Jammu Airport

Leader of Congress in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad was reportedly stopped at the Jammu airport earlier this afternoon. He has been sent back to Delhi, according to ANI.

DMK Invites Opposition Parties to Protest Against Arrest of J&K Leaders

Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) has invited leaders of opposition parties, including Congress, CPM, CPI, IUML, NCP, TMC, VCK (TN), SP and RJD, to join the protest on 22 August at Jantar Mantar in Delhi, demanding release of political leaders and activists in Jammu and Kashmir.

Delhi HC Seeks Centre, J&K Response on Shah Faesal Detention

A plea was moved in the Delhi High Court on Monday alleging that former IAS officer Shah Faesal was illegally detained at the IGI Airport in Delhi on 14 August and taken back to Srinagar where he has been kept under house arrest.

The matter came up for hearing before a bench of Justices Manmohan and Sangita Dhingra Sehgal which did not issue notice in the matter after the central government, represented by Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, said it will file a response to the habeas corpus plea, moved on behalf of Faesal through a 'pariorkar' or next of friend – Mohd Hussain Cader.

A habeas corpus plea requires a person under arrest to be brought before a judge or a court. The court listed the matter for further hearing on 23 August .

USA Will Play It's Role To Resolve Kashmir Crisis, Says Pakistan

Pakistan Foreign Minister, Shah Mahmood Qureshi, has said that President of United States Donald Trump spoke to Pakistan PM Imran Khan on 19 August. According to Shah, President Trump and USA will play its role to resolve the ongoing Kashmir crisis.

Jammu Police Releases Contact Numbers to Fight Rumours

Jammu Zone police has released phone numbers ‘for information regarding any rumour monger or person spreading malicious content.’

The numbers are: 0191-2542001, 2542000, 2560401, 2544581 and help line nos. 2560244 & 100.

J&K Guv Advisors Review Development, Security in Doda, Kishtwar

Advisors to the Jammu and Kashmir Governor K K Sharma and K Skandan on Monday reviewed development and security scenario in Kishtwar and Doda districts, news agency PTI reported quoting an official spokesman.

The senior civil and police officers briefed them on the service delivery, position of stocks and supplies, besides security scenario in the mountainous region, he said.

While on one-day tour of the twin districts, the advisors took stock of the developmental activities, reviewed stock and supply position of essential commodities and law and order situation there, he added.

Reviewing the functioning and performance of each department, the advisors asked for fast tracking of key projects and effective implementation of schemes for achieving optimum results on the ground.

27 PoK Residents Fail to Go Back As Authorities Deny Opening Gates

27 residents of PoK who had come to Poonch and were scheduled to return on Monday through Cross-LoC bus services, had to stay back in Poonch as PoK authorities did not open the gates to their side.

Anti-India Violence By Leaders Not Conducive to Peace: PM to Trump

Speaking to US President Donald Trump on Monday, 19 August, PM Narendra Modi said, “extreme rhetoric and incitement to anti-India violence by certain leaders in the region was not conducive to peace.”

According to PTI, the PM highlighted importance of creating an environment free from terror and violence and eschewing cross-border terrorism.

The two leaders spoke bilateral and regional matters, news agency ANI reported.

All Middle-Level Schools to Be Opened Across Kashmir Valley on Wednesday

After the re-opening of primary schools, the government has decided to re-open all middle-level schools across Kashmir valley from Wednesday.

Ready to Help J&K Hold Investment Summit in Mumbai: Fadnavis

Maharashtra is ready to help Jammu and Kashmir if it wants to organise an investment summit ibn Mumbai post scrapping of its special status and reorganisation, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said on Monday.

"We will facilitate them (Jammu & Kashmir administration) and provide full assistance if they wish to hold an investment summit here in Mumbai," Fadnavis told reporters in Mumbai.

Seeking to attract businesses to Jammu and Kashmir in the post Article 370-era, the border state's administration has already announced a three-day global investors summit to be held in Srinagar from 12 October.

All Areas Where Relaxations Have Been Extended Are Peaceful: DIG Central Kashmir

Addressing the media, DIG Central Kashmir, V K Birdi said on Monday that all the areas where relaxations have been extended have been peaceful.

“There were some minor incidents of stone-pelting in certain pockets but those were dealt with as per law and the miscreants were dispersed,” he said.

Shah Faesal Moves Habeas Corpus Plea in Delhi High Court Challenging Detention

Shah Faesal has moved a habeas corpus plea in Delhi High Court challenging his recent detention at Delhi airport. The court has sought a response from the Centre and fixed 23 August as the next date of hearing.

DMK, Opposition Parties to Hold Protest at Jantar Mantar over Abrogation of Article 370

The Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) on Monday announced that it will hold a protest in Delhi on 22 August against the Centre’s decision to effectively revoke Article 370. The protest will be held at Delhi's Jantar Mantar, India Today reported.

The protest will be attended by DMK MPs and other lawmakers to demand the release of political leaders who have been detained in Jammu & Kashmir. DMK MP T R Baalu said the Congress, CPI(M), CPI, TMC and the India Union Muslim League (IUML) among others have confirmed their participation in the protest. The DMK leader said he is trying to contact Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav and other leaders.

In a statement, MK Stalin strongly condemned the Centre’s move and said the detention of family members of political leaders in J&K is "unacceptable and unconscionable".

No Major Law & Order Situation in Valley, Life Returning to Normal: J&K Officials

Syed Sehrish Asgar, Director of Information and Public Relations Jammu & Kashmir on Monday held a press conference, saying that there had been no major law and order situation reported from across the valley and that life was returning to normal. Asgar added that the public, in general, had been cooperative, according to ANI.

She added that no incident of law and order had been reported in the Jammu region.

“Some rumours were spread yesterday by certain elements. The government urges people not to believe in any kind of rumour-mongering by the vested interests,” Asgar added.

The J&K Police’s Twitter handle also said that the situation on Monday had been peaceful across Jammu and Kashmir.

"New Normal" In Place: Chidambaram Lashes Out at Centre

Senior Congress leader and former home minister P Chidambaram on Monday lashed out at the Centre over the situation in Jammu and Kashmir, alleging that there was a "new normal" in place.

No Lavish Weddings in Kashmir: Mutton Sellers, Wazwan Cooks, Jewellers Pay the Price

Business in Kashmir's traditional wedding season has taken a massive hit as thousands of couples have opted for simpler ceremonies instead of lavish ones due to the restrictions imposed in the valley following the scrapping of Jammu and Kashmir's special status.

Mutton suppliers, camping agencies, jewellers, wedding wear outlets and wazwan (traditional Kashmiri cuisine) cooks have seen their business slump due the no-frills wedding ceremonies after restrictions were imposed on the movement of people.

The local dailies, which have managed to publish a few pages, have a dedicated page for advertisements related to the cancellation of wedding invitations extended to relatives and friends.

Most Educational Institutions Reopen in Jammu's Border Districts

Most educational institutions in five sensitive border districts of Jammu reopened after a fortnight on Monday with "full attendance" as authorities lifted curbs in large parts of the region, officials said. Educational institutions reopened in the border districts of Rajouri and Poonch and Chenab Valley districts of Ramban, Doda and parts of Kishtwar.

"All educational institutions across the district, both private and government, including degree colleges and higher secondary schools, resumed classes (on Monday)," deputy commissioner, Rajouri, Aijaz Asad, told PTI.

Asad said the prohibitory orders under Section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code also stand withdrawn as the law and order situation has been normal. Markets have also opened.

In Poonch district, the officials said barring higher secondary schools and colleges, all educational institutions have reopened and people have resumed their normal activities.

Deputy commissioner, Kishtwar, Angrez Singh Rana, said a number of private schools reopened in the district on their own as the law and order situation in the communally sensitive district remained well under control.

The officials said primary, middle and higher secondary schools also reopened across Ramban district, except in Banihal sub-division.

The schools up to Class 10 also reopened in Doda district, they said.

Revoking Provisions of Article 370 a 'Betrayal': National Conference MP Masoodi

National Conference MP Hasnain Masoodi on Monday said the Centre's move to abrogate provisions of Article 370 that gave special status to Jammu and Kashmir was a "betrayal" carried out "unconstitutionally".

Masoodi, a retired judge of the Jammu and Kashmir High Court, said the bifurcation of the state in two Union Territories cannot be done without the consent of the state assembly.

"Leave aside Jammu and Kashmir, it cannot happen in any state without taking views of the state legislature into consideration. In this case, they became the petitioner, respondent, advocate and judge all by themselves," Masoodi told reporters in Srinagar.

"Fundamentally a betrayal has happened and it has been done unconstitutionally. They are celebrating a betrayal. We are only talking about the Constitution... Promises were made to us in 1947, there was Delhi agreement. Those promises were made unanimously but now all they have been broken unilaterally," he said.

NSA Ajit Doval Briefs Amit Shah on Kashmir

National Security Advisor Ajit Doval on Monday briefed Home Minister Amit Shah on the prevailing security situation in Jammu and Kashmir, where restrictions have been imposed since 5 August, officials said.

This was the first time Doval met Shah after his return from the Kashmir Valley, where he stayed for about 10 days and personally monitored the situation. The NSA apprised the home minister of the overall situation in Jammu and Kashmir, an official said.

Union Home Secretary Rajiv Gauba and other top officials also attended the meeting that reviewed the steps taken to maintain law and order in the state. The issues related to restrictions imposed in various parts of Jammu and Kashmir were also figured in the meeting, the official said.

Teachers Report to Schools in Kashmir, Students Don't

Teachers reported to work in many schools in Kashmir as restrictions were eased further on Monday but not many students were seen.

Officials said the government has made necessary arrangements for opening of 190 primary schools in Srinagar city as security forces remained deployed in most of the Valley.

But all private schools in the city remained shut for the 15th consecutive day as parents were apprehensive about the security situation in view of violent protests over the past two days. Only Police Public School at Bemina and a few Kendriya Vidyalayas saw a handful of students turning up.

Case Against Shehla Rashid for Spreading 'Fake News' Against Army

Supreme Court lawyer Alakh Alok Srivastava filed a criminal complaint against Shehla Rashid, seeking her arrest for allegedly spreading fake news against Indian Army and Government of India.

Schools Reopen in Srinagar, Rajouri

More than two weeks after the clampdown in Jammu and Kashmir, schools re-opened in areas including Srinagar and Rajouri, on Monday, 19 August, reported ANI.

Indian Army Rejects Allegations Levelled by Shehla Rashid

The Indian Army has rejected all allegations made by activist Shehla Rashid, calling it “baseless.”

"Allegations levelled by Shehla Rashid are baseless and rejected. Such unverified and fake news are spread by inimical elements and organisations to incite unsuspecting population," the Army stated, reported ANI.

Earlier in the day, Rashid had posted on her Twitter account that armed forces were entering houses at night, picking up boys, ransacking houses, deliberately spilling rations on the floor, mixing oil with rice.

10 More Telephone Exchanges Made Operational in Kashmir Valley

Jammu and Kashmir authorities made 10 more telephone exchanges operational in Kashmir Valley on Sunday, but again snapped services of one of the 17 centres restored on Saturday, officials said.
The authorities closed one of the 17 exchanges after reports that landline phones were being used for spreading misinformation campaign, they said.
With these, around 28,000 fixed-line phones, out of around 50,000 in Kashmir Valley, were functional.

Minor Reports of 2-3 Disturbances: J&K Principal Secretary (Planning Commission)

Rohit Kansal, J&K Principal Secretary (Planning Commission) said, “We have received reports of hooligans & mischievous elements forcing shopkeepers in certain areas to keep their establishments shut. This has been taken note of by law enforcing agency. Appropriate action will be taken.” He also spoke of “minor reports of 2-3 disturbances in areas where relaxations were not provided” which were “dealt with by local security agencies.”

Kansal also mentioned that they have reports of two injuries and said that “we'll endeavor that landline communication is restored to its full functionality as soon as possible, subject to physical limitation that BSNL is facing.”

Have to Reduce Communication to Maintain Law & Order: J&K Governor's Advisor

Speaking to ANI, K Vijay Kumar, Jammu & Kashmir Governor's Advisor said, “If the man on the street who is staying inside the house is not aware what is the intention of the government, then he is in a state of confused mind. All efforts are being made to convey what is happening,” reports ANI. Speaking on mobile internet services being suspended in the state, Kumar said, “Because we have to main law & order, as an essential preventive measure, we had to reduce the communication channels so that it were not put to misuse. We are keen that we should open communications channels as soon as possible.”

Mobile Internet Services Once Again Snapped In Jammu

Low-speed (2G) mobile Internet services were once again snapped in five districts of Jammu region on Sunday to check rumour-mongering, a day after the services were restored.

Police officials said that the authorities concerned directed service providers to snap the services around forenoon, reported PTI.

The official said the decision was taken to check rumour-mongering and maintain peace and tranquillity. Low-speed mobile Internet services were restored in five districts of Jammu, Samba, Kathua, Udhampur and Reasi during the intervening night of Friday and Saturday after remaining suspended for nearly a fortnight.

Jammu IG Warns Against Circulating Fake Messages on Social Media

After 2G mobile Internet services were restored in five districts of Jammu region on Saturday, Jammu Inspector General of Police Mukesh Singh warned of strict action against anyone circulating fake messages or videos on social media.

"The internet services have been restored in five districts of Jammu region -- Jammu, Samba, Kathua, Udhampur and Reasi. General public is requested to refrain from sharing or circulating any type of fake messages or videos in the social media which might vitiate the peaceful atmosphere," Singh said.

LPG Cylinders to Be Home Delivered in Srinagar

The administration has started home delivery of LPG cylinders to consumers in the Srinagar district, Directorate of Information confirmed.

J&K Police Chief Visits South Kashmir Districts

Jammu and Kashmir Police Chief Dilbag Singh visited Pulwama and Anantnag districts in south Kashmir on Saturday to review security arrangements and said that prohibitory orders will be relaxed in more areas on Sunday.

Restrictions on the movement of people were eased and landline phone services restored in some areas of Kashmir Valley even as the stringent security arrangements remain in place.

Director General of Police (DGP) Singh, accompanied by Inspector General of Police, Kashmir, S P Pani and CRPF IG Rajesh Kumar Yadav, reviewed the deployment of security forces of the national highway from Srinagar to Anantnag.

Retired Military Officers and Bureaucrats Move SC Against J&K Reorganisation Bill & Abrogation of Article 370

Retired military officers and bureaucrats have filed a petition in the Supreme Court of India challenging the Presidential Order by which Article 370 of the Constitution of India was effectively revoked, Bar and Bench reported.

Restrictions Eased in 5 More Districts of Jammu Region

Authorities eased restrictions in five more districts which had been imposed early this month as a precautionary measure following the revocation of the special status of Jammu and Kashmir, officials said.

The restrictions under the prohibitory orders were eased in Kishtwar, Doda and Ramban districts in the Chenab Valley and border districts of Poonch and Rajouri in the Pir Panjal region early in the morning, they said.

Officials said that most of the shops and business establishments in the districts have reopened but educational institutions remain closed and are likely to reopen from Monday, PTI reported.

'Waited 70 Years for This Moment': BJP Ladakh MP Namgyal on UT Status

BJP Ladakh MP, Jamyang Tsering Namgyal, told ANI “We'll invite PM Modi and Amit Shah and wait for them to give us dates. We're planning a grand celebration for them and all those who made separate status for Ladakh possible. We've waited 70 years for this moment.”

Pak Army 'Fully Prepared' to Face Any Challenge: Pak Army Spokesman

Pakistan, on Saturday, said that its Army is "fully prepared" to face any challenge posed by India in the wake of the current tensions between the two countries over Kashmir.

Addressing a joint press conference with Foreign Minister Shah, Mahmood Qureshi following a meeting of the country's top brass on the situation in Kashmir, Army spokesman Major Gen Asif Ghafoor said it was possible India could launch an attack to divert the world's attention from Kashmir, PTI reported.

"We have apprehension that India can launch attack to divert attention but we are fully prepared to deal with any misadventure," he said.He said enough reinforcement has been provided at the Line of Control to deal with any situation.

Warning of the possibility of an unintended war, the Army spokesman said that "Kashmir issue is nuclear flashpoint."Qureshi said the meeting also discussed if the Kashmir issue should be taken to the International Court of Justice.

'I Welcome the UNSC Meeting': Pak PM Imran Khan

A day after UNSC held a closed door meeting on Kashmir issue, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan welcomed the the move.

“It is for the first time in over 50 yrs that the world’s highest diplomatic forum has taken up this issue,” he said in a tweet.

'Article 370 Had Become Shield for Terrorists': Union Minister Prasad

Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said on Saturday that Article 370 had become a platform to "shield" terrorists and their patrons.

"The government's decision on Article 370 was taken in the interest of the nation as well as the common people of Jammu and Kashmir," Prasad told reporters on the sidelines of the inauguration of the 17th all India meet of state legal services authorities in Nagpur, Maharashtra, PTI reported.

"We should understand that it was a temporary provision and removed in the interest of the country," Prasad said. "We always strive for protection of the country and for the people of Jammu and Kashmir. We want Jammu and Kashmir to progress."

All Telephone Lines to Be Restored Tomorrow: Rohit Kansal

Jammu and Kashmir Principal Secretary Rohit Kansal said that the public transport has started playing and there has been “normal movement” from rural areas.

“We hope that by tomorrow evening, barring a few vulnerable areas, all telephone exchanges in Kashmir valley shall be made functional. Landlines and mobiles are already functional in Jammu. We've also opened up mobile internet with some functionality in at least 5 districts,” Kansal said.

Pak Violates Ceasefire Along Loc in J&K's Rajouri, One Indian Army Soldier Dies

A Pakistani post opposite the Rajouri sector of J&K has been hit in action by Indian Army on Saturday. The exchange of fire between the two sides is still on after Pakistan violated ceasefire.

One Indian Army soldier lost his life this morning in Pakistani firing.

Landline Services in Kashmir Valley Restored

Landline services in 17 exchanges of Kashmir Valley restored, said officials on Saturday, 17 August, reported PTI.

2G Mobile Internet Services Restored in Jammu

Low-speed (2G) mobile internet services have been restored in five districts of Jammu region and restrictions relaxed in 35 police stations in the Kashmir Valley, state police chief Dilbag Singh said on Saturday.

However, he warned that any misuse of internet facilities will result in legal action.

Now there are no restrictions in 10 districts of Jammu with ongoing relaxation at Poonch, Banihal, Kishtwar and Bhaderwah towns for the day, he said.

"Restrictions relaxed in the jurisdiction of 35 police stations in the Kashmir Valley. Shops opened in most of these areas. Landline numbers opened in some parts of each district in Kashmir. Communication opened Jammu region," Singh said.

The 2G mobile internet services have been restored in Jammu, Samba, Kathua, Udhampur and Reasi districts, officials said.

They said the high-speed (3G and 4G) mobile internet services will be restored after a fresh assessment of the situation.

Trump Urges Indo-Pak Dialogue in Call With Imran

US President Donald Trump on Friday conveyed the importance of India and Pakistan reducing tensions through bilateral dialogue on the Kashmir issue during a phone call with Prime Minister Imran Khan, the White House said.

The phone conversation between Trump and Khan took place before the close-door-consultation of the 15 members of the UN Security Council in New York. The White House readout of the call was issued after the meeting concluded at the UN headquarters in New York.

'Internal Matter': India's Representative to UN After UNSC Meet on J&K

Addressing the media after the UN Security Council held a closed door meeting to discuss India revoking the special status of J&K, India's permanent representative to the United Nations Syed Akbaruddin said, "Our national position was and remains that matters related to Article 370 of the Indian Constitution are entirely an internal matter of India."

"“These have no external ramifications, the recent decisions taken by the Government of India and our legislative bodies are intended to ensure that good governance is promoted, socio-economic development is enhanced for our people in Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh.”" - Syed Akbaruddin, India’s permanent representative to UN

Akbaruddin said that India is committed to gradually removing all restrictions in the region. "India remains committed to ensure that the situation there (J&K) remains calm and peaceful."

"“We took preventive measures in Kashmir to stop terrorists (from) bleeding our people... Some (are) trying to project an alarmist situation in Kashmir to propagate their ideology.”" - Syed Akbaruddin

UNSC Meeting Nullifies India's Claims That J&K is An Internal Matter: Pak Representative

After the UNSC meeting, Pakistan's Reprensentative to the UN Maleeha Lodhi was quoted by the country's daily, The Nation, as saying that the Security Council meeting nullifies India's claims that J&K is an internal matter of India.

Pak PM Imran Khan Discusses Kashmir With Trump Over Phone

Pakistan PM Imran Khan on Friday discussed the Kashmir issue with US President Donald Trump over the phone, as the UN Security Council held a closed door meeting to discuss India revoking the special status of J&K.

Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said Khan took the US President "into confidence" regarding the UNSC meeting at the UN headquarters.

UNSC Members Think India & Pak Should Refrain from Unilateral Action: China's UN Ambassador

China's UN ambassador on Friday said that the UN Security Council members generally think India and Pakistan should refrain from unilateral action over Kashmir, reported Reuters.

'Bilateral Issue': Russian Representative Before UNSC Meet

Russia's deputy permanent representative, Dimitry Polyanskiy, said before entering the meeting room for the UNSC discussion on J&K that Moscow's view is that it is a "bilateral issue" between India and Pakistan.

He said the meeting was being held to understand what is happening, reported PTI.

"That's what closed consultations are for. What does Russia think the next step should be – we favour bilateral track between India and Pakistan. You know our position. It hasn't changed. Today, we have closed consultations and we will just exchange opinions and see what we can do and what we cannot do. It is a normal process."

When asked if Russia was concerned over the tense situation between India and Pakistan, Polyanskiy reportedly said, "We are very much concerned. We hope to avoid it.”

UNSC Holds Closed-Door Meet on J&K

The UN Security Council on Friday began a rare closed door meeting to discuss India revoking the special status of Jammu and Kashmir after Pakistan, backed by China, requested "closed consultations" on the issue.

The outcome of the UNSC meeting will not be a formal pronouncement as the consultations are informal in nature, reported PTI. India and Pakistan are not attending the meeting, which is open only to the five permanent members and 10 non-permanent members.

China, a permanent member of the UNSC and close ally of Pakistan, had asked for "closed consultations" in the Council, which began its deliberations at 10 am (7:30pm Indian Standard Time) in the Security Council Consultations Room.

Most Landlines to Be Functional Over the Weekend: J&K Chief Secy

J&K Chief Secretary BVR Subrahmanyam, in his address to the media on Friday, said that most landlines will be functional over the weekend, according to an NDTV report.

When questioned about restoration of landline telephones, Subrahmanyam was quoted as saying, "Exchange by exchange, they will be switching it on. Over the weekend, you'll have most of these lines functional."

Amid Indo-Pak Tensions, Thar Link Express Suspended

Amid tensions between India and Pakistan following the effective revocation of Article 370 in J&K, India has suspended the Jodhpur-Munabao Thar Link Express. This train is the Indian part of the international passenger train operating between Jodhpur and Karachi.

Watch: Congress Leader Abhishek Manu Singhvi Addresses Media on Kashmir Issue

'Preventive Detentions Being Reviewed': J&K Chief Secretary

In his address to the media, J&K Chief Secretary BVR Subrahmanyam pointed out that a few preventive detentions of individuals were made in accordance with provisions of law to maintain law and order.

"“Preventive detentions are being reviewed and appropriate decisions will be made based on law and order assessments. The government’s focus is on the earliest return to normalcy while ensuring that terrorist forces are given no opportunity to wreak havoc as in the past.”" - J&K Chief Secretary BVR Subrahmanyam

Schools to be Opened, Govt Offices Functional from Today: J&K Chief Secy

Addressing the media on Friday, Jammu and Kashmir Chief Secretary BVR Subrahmanyam said there would be an "easing of restrictions in the next few days in an orderly way", with schools to be opened after the weekend area by area.

"Movement of public transport would be made operational. Government offices are functional from today. Telecom connectivity will be gradually eased and restored in a phased manner," the chief secretary said.

Subrahmanyam further said that 12 out of 22 districts in Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh are functioning normally, with some limited restrictions in five districts. "The measures put in place has ensured that there has not been a single loss of life."

Pak Escalated Ceasefire Violation, Says Indian Army

The Indian Army on 16 August said that Pakistan has upscaled 'ceasefire violations' both in terms of weapon and area in last few days, reported ANI, quoting sources.

“With United Nations sessions to commence shortly, Pakistan can play victim card and with hope that escalating ceasefire violations may invite due attention,”sources told ANI.

Pakistan Cracks Down on Indian Ads, Movies

Pakistan has banned Indian advertisements and launched a crackdown on CD shops to confiscate Indian movies, news agency ANI quoted Firdous Ashiq Awan, Special Assistant to Pakistan Prime Minister on Information, as saying.

Educational Institutions to Reopen in Kashmir from Monday

Quoting government sources, news agency ANI reported that schools and other educational institutions will reopen in Kashmir valley from Monday, 19 August.

‘Caged, Deprived’: Mehbooba Mufti’s Daughter Writes Letter to Shah

In a letter to Home Minister Amit Shah, Iltija Mufti, the daughter of former J&K Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti has written that Kashmiris have been ‘caged like animals and deprived of basic human rights’

Return of Kashmiri Pandits to Valley Possible Only with Support of Stakeholders: Adviser to J&K Guv

dviser to J&K Governor, Farooq Khan, has said the complete return of Kashmiri Pandits (KPs) to the Valley is possible only with the support and cooperation of all stakeholders.

"The complete return of Kashmiri migrants to the Valley is possible only with the support and cooperation of all stakeholders, including the civil society of Kashmir, who share a social and cultural bond with the Kashmiri migrants," Khan said on Thursday.

He said the government was committed to the safe return and rehabilitation of Kashmiri Pandits in the Valley.

Pakistan Summons Top Indian Diplomat

Pakistan Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Friday summoned Indian Deputy High Commissioner to Pakistan, Gaurav Ahluwalia over alleged ceasefire violations.

Restrictions Will Be Lifted in 'Next Few Days': Centre

Representing the Centre during the hearing on a clutch of pleas related to the J&K situation, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta said that the government security agencies were taking stock of the situation and the restrictions will be lifted in the ‘next few days’.

No Restriction on Publication of Kashmir Times: KK Venugopal

During the hearing of plea against restrictions on communication in J&K, Attorney General KK Venugopal said, “There is no restriction on Kashmir Times on publication of newspaper from J&K and its Jammu edition is being published on daily basis. Don't know why they not publishing the paper from Kashmir.”

SC Refuses to Pass Any Order on Plea Against Restrictions on Communication

The Supreme Court has refused to pass any by executive editor of Kashmir Times for lifting of restrictions on telephone, internet and movement of journalists.

The matter has been adjourned without giving a date.

Six petitions Defective: CJI

The Supreme Court on Friday expressed anguish over "defective" petitions challenging scrapping of provisions of Article 370 of the Constitution.

A bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi said the petition by advocate M L Sharma challenging the scrapping of Article 370 has "no meaning".

"What kind of petition is this? It could have been dismissed but there are 5 other pleas with the registry," the bench also comprising S A Bobde and S A Najeer said.

"You are not praying for setting aside the Presidential order. What is the prayer it is not clear. It can be dismissed on technical grounds," the bench said and added that there were five other petitions in the registry which are defective.

'Would Like to Give It Little Time': CJI to Anuradha Bhasin on Plea Against Communication Clampdown

Hearing the petition filed by Anuradha Bhasin, Executive Editor of Kashmir Times, against communication clampdown in J&K, the CJI said that some more time should be given before lifting the restrictions.

“We would like to give it a little time. I have read in the papers that landlines will be restored by evening,” he said, to which Justice Bobde replied saying the landlines are working.

CJI Slams ML Sharma for Poor Drafting of Petition

CJI Ranjan Gogoi slammed the petition filed by lawyer ML Sharma against the abrogation of Article 370.

“I tried to read the petition for half an hour, I could not understand it. We should dismiss this, but we don't want to because of the effect it will have on others," he said.

Easing of Public Curbs to Be Mulled After Friday's 'Namaaz'

The easing of public curbs in Jammu &Kashmir would depend on the day's development after the namaaz (prayers), news agency PTI reported quoting a Raj Bhawan spokesperson.

The Jammu and Kashmir government secretariat and other offices will also start functioning from Friday.

Governor Malik took the decision after a review of the security scenario in the state that ensured peaceful Independence Day celebrations across the state, including in its various district headquarters and elsewhere, the spokesperson said.

SC to Hear Petitions Against Article 370 on Friday

The Supreme Court is scheduled to hear on Friday, 16 August, the petitions posing legal challenges to the Centre's decision to scrap provisions of Article 370 which abrogated special status to Jammu and Kashmir and subsequent measures putting restrictions on the working of media in the region.

A special bench, comprising Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justices SA Bobde and SA Nazeer, will hear the petitions filed by advocate ML Sharma and Executive Editor, Kashmir Times Anuradha Bhasin.

While the advocate has challenged the scrapping of provisions of Article 370, which has resulted in the creation of two Union Territories – Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh, the journalist has sought directions for restoring of all modes of communication, including mobile Internet and landline services, throughout the state to provide an enabling environment for the media to practice its profession.

UNSC to Hold 'Closed-Door' Meeting to Discuss Kashmir on Friday

After Pakistan and China urged the UN Security Council to hold meetings to discuss the Kashmir issue, Poland, which currently holds the council's rotating presidency, has listed the matter for discussion at 10:00 am (1400 GMT) on Friday, 16 August, diplomats told AFP.

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