Over 50 Agitated Sarpanches, Panches Resign En Masse In Ramban Jammu And Kashmir
Banihal/Jammu, Oct 9: Over 50 sarpanches and panches have resigned en masse in two blocks of Ramban district in Jammu and Kashmir over various issues, officials said on Saturday.
They have resigned alleging lack of promised empowerment, unnecessary interference and their side-lining by the administration during the ongoing public outreach programme of the central ministers, officials said.
Amid the en mass resignation by rural civic body representatives, Peoples Democratic Party took a pot-shot at the BJP government, saying the “cosmetic normalcy and pomp and show being projected (in the Union Territory) stands punctured.”
Officials, however, said the district panchayat officer Ashok Singh held a meeting with the representatives of the agitated members and requested them to withdraw their resignation, seeking to assure them that all their genuine grievances would be addressed at the earliest.
About 50 sarpanches and panches, belonging to Banihal and Ramsu blocks, submitted their resignation en-mass to concerned Block Development Council chairpersons on Friday after an emergency meeting, the officials said.
Sarpanches Ghulam Rasool Mattoo, Tanveer Ahmad Katoch and Mohammad Rafiq Khan alleged that the promises made to them by the government have only remained on the papers.
They alleged that they are being ignored and face unnecessary interference in developmental works while the promised participation of 30 government departments in Gram Sabhas has proved a “crude joke”.
Referring to the visit of central government ministers under the public outreach programme, they said the local administration is not honouring their protocols and only selected representatives are invited to have meetings with visiting ministers to mislead the government.
“Only one sarpanch among 12 was allowed to meet the visiting Minister of State for Rural Development in Banihal. Mattoo was also not allowed to meet the Railway minister to raise public issues,” Katoch said, adding they are facing humiliation as they are unable to fulfil any promise made to the public.
Mattoo alleged that contractors are running the show on the ground as the government failed to implement the Panchayati Raj and they are not allowed to take part in the tendering process for different projects.
Sharing a two-page resignation letter of the panches and sarpanches on Twitter, PDP spokesperson Mohit Bhan wrote, “55 Panches & Sarpanches resign en masse. Cosmetic normalcy pomp & show being projected stands punctured. The government failed in securing these elected representatives & neither could empower them to carry out public welfare works.
“The government”s claim of taking democracy to its grassroots stands exposed by this mass resignation. Panches and Sarpanches were ignored during the recent Union ministers’ visit & the administration continues to treat them as decorative pieces,” the PDP leader said.
Ramban district president of J&K Panchayat Conference, Mohammad Iqbal Katoch said a group of agitating panches and sarpanches met the district panchayat officer Ashok Singh on Saturday and apprised him of their grievances.
“The officer requested them to withdraw their resignation with an assurance that all their grievances will be addressed in shortest possible time,” Katoch, who was also present during the meeting said.
He added that another meeting is scheduled to take place on Monday to sort out the issues raised by the panches and sarpanches in their joint resignation letter.—(PTI)
Eastern Ladakh Standoff: India, China To Hold Military Talks On Sunday
New Delhi, Oct 9: India and China will hold another round of high-level military talks on Sunday with a focus on making some forward movement in the disengagement process in the remaining friction points in eastern Ladakh, government sources said.
The talks are scheduled to start at 10:30 AM at the Moldo border point on the Chinese side of the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in eastern Ladakh, the sources said on Saturday.
The Indian side is expected to seek disengagement as soon as possible in the remaining friction points besides pressing for resolution of issues in Depsang Bulge and Demchok.
The 12th round of talks had taken place on July 31. Days after the talks, the two armies completed the disengagement process in Gogra, which was seen as a significant forward movement towards the restoration of peace and tranquillity in the region.
The 13th round of talks is taking place in the backdrop of two recent incidents of attempted transgressions by the Chinese troops — one in the Barahoti sector of Uttarakhand and another in the Tawang sector in Arunachal Pradesh.
Indian and Chinese troops were engaged in a brief face-off near Yangtse in the Tawang sector of Arunachal Pradesh last week and it was resolved within few hours following talks between commanders of the two sides as per established protocols, people familiar with the development said on Friday.
Last month, close to 100 soldiers of China”s People”s Liberation Army (PLA) transgressed the LAC in the Barahoti sector.
The transgression took place on August 30, and the Chinese troops returned from the area after spending few hours.
Chief of Army Staff Gen MM Naravne on Saturday said the military build-up by China in the eastern Ladakh region and new infrastructure development to sustain the large-scale deployment are a matter of concern.
He also said if the Chinese military maintains the deployment through the second winter, then it may lead to an LoC-like situation (Line of Control) though not an active LoC as is there on the western front with Pakistan.
The Indian delegation at Sunday”s talks is to be led by Lt Gen PGK Menon, the Commander of the Leh-based 14 Corps.
The border standoff between the Indian and Chinese militaries erupted on May 5 last year following a violent clash in the Pangong lake areas and both sides gradually enhanced their deployment by rushing in tens of thousands of soldiers as well as heavy weaponry.
As a result of a series of military and diplomatic talks, the two sides completed the disengagement process in the Gogra area in August.
In February, the two sides completed the withdrawal of troops and weapons from the north and south banks of the Pangong lake in line with an agreement on disengagement.
Each side currently has around 50,000 to 60,000 troops along the LAC in the sensitive sector.—(PTI)
Won’t Attend Duty Unless Govt Assures Security To Minorities In Valley: GPC, ‘Govt Fails To Safeguard Us, Majority Community Should Have Joined Us In Funeral Of Kour‘
Srinagar, Oct 09: Gurudawara Prabandak Committee (GPC) Saturday said that the minority community members won’t attend the duty unless the government assures their protection in the valley.
Addressing a press conference, General Secretary Navtej Singh said that though there were many inputs and incidents in the past targeting the minorities yet government didn’t provide any security to the community.
Singh said that the government has failed to safeguard the minority community in Jammu and Kashmir.
“We demand from the government to provide security to our government employees and assure the minority community that they are safe in the valley,” he said.
Singh said that the majority should come forward and condemn the attack on the minority communities.
“It would have been better if the majority community would have participated in yesterday’s protest,” Singh said. “Unless government assures security to the minority, none of them would attend the government duty.”kno
Covid-19: Lone Mohalla Sogam Hamlet In Kupwara Declared ‘Micro Red Zone
Kupwara, Oct 9: Authorities in Kupwara on Saturday declared a “Lone Mohalla Sogam” hamlet in north Kashmir’s Kupwara district as “micro Red Zone” after a few covid-19 cases were reported from the area.
Consequent to the declaration, inward or outward movement of any person from the Zone has been barred, according to an order issued by the deputy commissioner Kupwara, a copy of which lies with
“Further the surrounding hamlets of “Lone Mohalla Sogam” are declared as Buffer Zone and the inhabitants of the area shall also restrict their movement and shall not allow visitors to visit their homes without written permission of Administrator concerned,” the order reads.