Over 500 political workers and leaders in detention in Kashmir

SRINAGAR, Aug 7: Over 500 important political workers and leaders, including former chief ministers Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti, have been detained in Jammu and Kashmir since the Centre decided to revoke provisions of Article 370 and divide the state to two union territories, officials said.
Activists across the political spectrum have been detained in Srinagar as well as other parts of the valley, they said.
According to latest reports, about 560 such workers have been lodged in makeshift detention centres in Sher-e-Kashmir International Convention Centre in Srinagar and other such centres in Baramulla and Gurez.
Former chief ministers Omar Abdullah of the National Conference and Mehbooba Mufti of the PDP have been detained at Hari Niwas on Gupkar road.
Amid the restrictions in place in the city, one person was killed in Noorbagh locality. A group of youngsters had gathered in the area and they were chased by CRPF personnel because of confusion over curfew, they said.
One of the youths jumped into the Jhelum river to escape the wrath of the heavily-armed paramilitary forces, but drowned. There was a protest in the locality but it ended after a cane charging in which six people were injured, they said.
The officials said curfew has not been declared, but authorities have ordered strict implementation of Section 144 of the CrPC which prohibits assembly of over five people in an area.
There are reports of other such clashes from across the valley but details are still not known because of the clampdown on communication links, they said.
Visuals of National Security Advisor Ajit Doval having lunch with locals, with closed shops in the backdrop, at an undisclosed locality were circulated in the media. He was heard saying in the video that once the new administration is set up, things will change.
Dressed in a green sleeveless bomber jacket and khaki and blue formals, he was also seen addressing personnel of the Jammu and Kashmir Police, CRPF and Army separately, telling them about their successes in disturbed areas.
Parliament on Tuesday approved a resolution abrogating special status to Jammu and Kashmir under Article 370 of the Constitution and a bill for splitting the state into two union territories.
The resolution was adopted by Lok Sabha with 351 members voting in its support and 72 against it, while one member abstained.
The bill to create two UTs — Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh — was passed by 370 votes in favour and 70 against. Modi was present in the House.
The resolution and the bill were approved by Rajya Sabha on Monday. (PTI)

IJU expresses concern

The Indian Journalists Union (IJU) expressed grave concern at the cut-off of all means of communication including basic, mobile telephones and internet services in Jammu & Kashmir since last one week.
Newspapers, TV channels and portals found it hard to collect, disseminate news and what is actually happening in the state amid spreading of wild rumour and fake news.
IJU president and Press Council of India member Amar Devulapally and secretary general of IJU and vice president of the International Journalists Federation Sabina Inderjit said that “such blanket closure of communication gateway not only a curb on press freedom, but a gag on freedom of speech which is antithesis of democracy. The IJU demands immediate restoration of all communication networks, including basic and mobile telephone and internet services in J&K.”