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Delhi High Court raises concern over Katra-Banihal rail link, gives one month notice to government for filing affidavit

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By NewsGram Staff Writer

Voicing concern over the safety of the allegedly faulty Katra-Banihal rail link in the Kashmir Valley, The Delhi High Court on Monday, expressed its worries about the safety of the citizens and asked the government to take a decision regarding the matter.

“The only thing that is worrying us is the safety of the citizens, as it (Katra-Banihal section) can cause a disaster. In the wake of the recent event which took place in Nepal, the government should be more serious about it”, the Delhi High Court said to PTI.

“It (the section) is unsafe. If you (government and the Railway Board) want to gamble with the life of the people then we cannot help you”, the court said, adding further that the government should take a call on it.

A panel of justices B D Ahmed and Sanjeev Sachdeva observed that even though an expert committee headed by ex-DMRC chief E Sreedharan had earlier raised concern over the existing alignment of the 124 km long section, the Railway Board had neglected the report.

The Economic Times, in a report, has stated that the bench had approved an alternate alignment, saying that “the biggest concern regarding the existing alignment is the poor survivability of the tunnels, bridges and cuttings against the threats of landslides, earthquakes, and the security risks arising out of the nearness of the line to the LOC.”

But the Railway Board rejected the panel’s suggestion stating that it was quite late to change the alignment now, as they had already spent Rs 10,000 crores on the 124 km section which has been in question for the last 13 years.

The report also cited Additional Solicitor General Maninder Singh, representing the Railway department, as saying that a lot of money had already been spent the rail link and it was not feasible to change the alignment at this late stage.

The Court did not want “railways to throw good money after bad”, but condemned the department for their lack of concern on safety issues.

The government has been asked to state its stand on the issue and has been given a month’s time to file an affidavit by the Court.

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A look into the mind of a brainwashed Kashmiri suicide bomber

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Peeping into the teenage Kashmiri suicide bomber's mind reveals the harsh realities the youth of Kashmir is facing. Pixabay
Peeping into the teenage Kashmiri suicide bomber's mind reveals the harsh realities the youth of Kashmir is facing. Pixabay
  • Jaish-e-Mohammad, a teenage suicide bomber who was killed this Sunday threatens attacks across India in a video.
  • The video shows how teenagers are brainwashed while sitting between terrorists and rifles.
  • The video has brought out the various reasons why the Kashmiri youth is turning towards terrorism.

A teenage Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) suicide bomber killed on Sunday in Kashmir had threatened terror attacks across India in an undated video which announces the “roaring” resurgence of his outfit headed by the Pakistan-based militant Masood Azhar.

The video, which gives a peek into how Kashmiri teenagers are being brainwashed into believing that they are targeting enemies of Islam, was apparently recorded in a house in the Kashmir Valley.

The Pakistan-based militant outfit on Monday released the eight-minute video online in which Fardeen Khanday, son of a Jammu and Kashmir policeman, urges Kashmiri youth and Muslims across the country to join the “fight against India”.
Kashmiri youth turns towards terrorism as they face severities. Wikipedia Commons
Kashmiri youth turns towards terrorism as they face severities. Wikipedia Commons

Seated between three AK assault rifles, a huge cache of ammunition, grenades and communication devices, Khanday appears calm even as he says that “by the time the video is released I will already be a new guest in heaven”.

Khanday, 16, was killed after he and two other Jaish suicide bombers attacked a paramilitary camp in Pulwama in south Kashmir on Sunday. Five Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel were killed in the attack. The other two attackers were also killed.

He said it was being made out as if unemployment was driving Kashmiri youths to take to militancy. “But the fact is that it is nothing (but) propaganda.

“The importance of jihad increases when infidels occupy our land and threaten the modesty of our women.

“My friends and I have listened to the call of Quran and plunged into the battlefield of jihad. This will continue till the last occupying soldier is present in Kashmir,” he says in Urdu with a thick Kashmiri accent.

According to police, Khanday, a resident of Tral in south Kashmir, which was the slain Burhan Wani’s hometown, joined militants only three months ago after his family reported him missing on September 15.

In the video, he also talks about the demolition of Babri Masjid as well as attacks on security forces blamed on the Jaish.

“Even after repeated claims by Indian security forces and agencies, Jaish-e-Mohammad has not been wiped out from the Valley. Jaish is not so weak. It is impossible to stop Jaish-e-Mohammad… We are roaring,” Khanday says in the recorded video. IANS