Prime Minister’s visit to Kashmir stands postponed; Lashkar-e-Taiba militant killed in a gunfight in Pulwama; Union Home Minister: Decision on AFSPA to be taken after discussion; South Kashmir emerges as hotbed of militants; Chief Justice of India to visi
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  • Reports noted that Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh’s proposed visit to Kashmir later this month to inaugurate Pirpanchal railway tunnel has been postponed. State Congress President Prof Saifuddin Soz said that the new dates for his visit will be finalized soon. 1

    In another development, according to reports, Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde has said that the government is considering the demand of various states including Jammu and Kashmir for withdrawal of the controversial Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act and a final decision will be taken only after talking to all stakeholders. AFSPA, which grants special powers to the armed forces, is also in force in some northeastern states besides Jammu and Kashmir. The Union Home Minister rejected demand for an all-party meeting and made it clear that only the states concerned would be consulted before taking a final call on repealing AFSPA. 2

    According to reports, after traditional stronghold in north, South Kashmir is emerging as a militant hotbed. During the past three weeks, six local militants and four soldiers were killed in different encounters. All the six militants and four soldiers were killed in different parts of South Kashmir’s Pulwama district. The militants who killed in South Kashmir were mostly belonged to Hizbul Mujahideen (HM) outfit. Police believe that militants are shifting base from their traditional strongholds to less suspect places. 3

    Reports noted that Chief Justice of India Altamas Kabir is arriving in Kashmir on two-day visit beginning June 16. He would inaugurate Jammu and Kashmir State Judicial Academy (JKSJA) building and deliver a lecture at University of Kashmir. This would be his first visit to Kashmir after taking over as the Chief Justice of the country’s highest Court last year. 4

    In other developments, according to reports, one Lashkar-e-Taiba militant was killed and two policemen injured in a brief encounter in Niloora village of Litter area in Pulwama district on June 10. 5