Another Threat

Compounding Kashmir’s post-flood troubles could be a problem not yet sufficiently highlighted, much less addressed, in the government’s, and the public’s, efforts to pull out of the chaos and disorder left behind by rushing waters. Reports from rural belts close to forests speak of markedly increased foraging by wild animals in fields and villages adding […]

Whither Waqf?

Among the many myths recent floods have demolished in Kashmir is one fabricated around the use and potential of the Waqf Board. Once again it has been shown that when crisis comes, the Waqf disappears. The Board controls most of the Valley’s shrines, and has incomes running into crores, but was conspicuous by its absence […]

BSNL’s ‘Services’

The BSNL’s landlines fell silent on September 7 when parts of Srinagar were hit by severe floods. Its broadband internet service also packed up the same day. Nearly three weeks have passed since the waters receded, and even small shopkeepers have begun repairing their businesses, but the so-called telecom giant has refused to stir itself, except […]

Pay Up

The Supreme Court’s unqualified endorsement of the Jammu and Kashmir High Court’s directives on swift insurance disbursals for flood-hit businesses and families had raised expectations of smooth and hassle-free interim settlements outlined by the judiciary, but insurance companies seem to be reluctant to abide by the ruling in letter and spirit on one pretext or […]

Resolve Issues 

But for their tragic toll, and deep roots, the on-again, off-again clashes between India and Pakistan along their frontiers in Kashmir would have earned their leaders a place in the hall of comic characters, and all-round condemnation for failing to come to grips with dire issues that bedevil their relations as well as their people. […]

Chief Minister’s Choices

The Government of India (GoI) is likely to change its usual fund-allocation arrangement for Jammu and Kashmir to check corruption.  Highly informed sources say that New Delhi is considering a proposal better than the Rs 44,000 crore plan drawn up by the state for post-flood reconstruction and rehabilitation. The GoI is said to be prepared […]

Some Thinking

Though the Jammu and Kashmir government appears to have done some thinking, at last, it is curious that its education minister should have been so out of sync with the situation on the ground, and announced a grandiose decision to hold major school examinations in November. Luckily, the government hastily withdrew the minister’s words, and […]

Gear Up

The Chief Minister has directed the administration to speed up the process of relief and rehabilitation in flood-hit Jammu and Kashmir. Evidently, prodding, to use a mild expression, by the union union minister for roads and highways, Nitin Gadkari, who had pulled the state government up for failing to produce a damage assessment report, has […]

Missing Rice

Even as the commander of the Army’s Srinagar-based 15th Corps lauded Kashmiri youth for the valour they displayed in rescuing people trapped in floods, 10,000 quintals of state-supplied rice meant for the displaced have gone missing, painting another picture of Kashmir.  Loaded in fifty-one trucks, the grain disappeared shortly after Chief Minister Omar Abdullah announced free […]

Schooling Issue

Preliminary official estimates indicate that over six thousand schools may have be damaged or destroyed in Kashmir during the recent floods. Annual exams were round the corner in most cases when the calamity struck, and the administration was gearing up to hold the high school, or matriculation, examinations. As in other spheres of life, infrastructure […]