Srinagar: The Shia community in Srinagar made history on Thursday as they took part in a Muharram procession along the Gurubazaar to Dalgate route, marking the first time in over three decades that the traditional event has been permitted. Hundreds of mourners participated in the procession, which was organized with the approval of the Jammu and Kashmir administration.
The march, which commenced at 6 am, was restricted to a two-hour window until 8 am, passing through the bustling Lal Chowk area. This decision was taken to ensure minimum inconvenience to the general public as the event occurred on a weekday.
The Additional Director General of Police, Kashmir, Vijay Kumar, assured the public that adequate security arrangements were in place to ensure a peaceful and safe procession. He mentioned that the demand for allowing the Muharram procession had been persistent from the Shia community over the past few years.
Divisional Commissioner of Kashmir, V K Bhiduri, described the administration’s decision to permit the procession as a “historic step.” He expressed hope that the peaceful conduct of the event would set a precedent for similar decisions on other issues in the region.
“The success of tomorrow’s procession will make it easy for taking decisions on issues as well. If anyone tries to create disturbance under this garb, they will be dealt with strictly,” warned Bhiduri.
The annual Muharram procession had been suspended for more than 30 years due to security concerns arising from the outbreak of militancy in Kashmir during the 1990s. However, the conducive atmosphere created by the people of Kashmir played a crucial role in influencing the administration’s decision to allow the event to take place this year.
The Muharram procession holds immense significance for the Shia community, and its revival after such a prolonged hiatus is being seen as a positive development, fostering communal harmony and a sense of inclusivity in the region.
As the procession concluded peacefully, authorities are hopeful that this milestone event will encourage further dialogue and understanding between communities and pave the way for more decisions promoting cultural and religious practices in the future.
Karnataka Cricketer Hoysala Dies at 34 from Cardiac Arrest
The Aegis South Zone tournament in Bengaluru was struck by tragedy as Karnataka cricketer Hoysala K, aged 34, succumbed to a sudden cardiac arrest.
The Aegis South Zone tournament in Bengaluru was struck by tragedy as Karnataka cricketer Hoysala K, aged 34, succumbed to a sudden cardiac arrest. The competition, brimming with excitement between Tamil Nadu and Karnataka, took a solemn turn with the unexpected loss of this talented player.
After the intense match against Tamil Nadu, Hoysala joined his teammates for dinner when he suddenly collapsed due to a heart attack. Despite swift medical intervention on-site, including emergency treatment by attending physicians, Hoysala could not be revived. He was swiftly transported to Bowring Hospital, but tragically, doctors pronounced him deceased upon arrival. The news sent shockwaves through the cricketing fraternity, with players, supporters, and officials mourning the untimely departure of this gifted cricketer.
Dinesh Gundu Rao, Karnataka’s Minister of Health & Family Welfare, conveyed his condolences via social media, stating, “Deeply saddened by the unexpected passing of Karnataka’s emerging cricketer, fast bowler K. Hoysala, during the Aegis South Zone Tournament. My heartfelt sympathies are with his family and friends during this difficult time. Instances like these underscore the imperative of health awareness, particularly regarding cardiac health.”
Hoysala K, renowned for his prowess as a fast bowler, had previously showcased his talents with teams like Bellary Tuskers and Shivamogga Lion in the Karnataka Premier League, leaving an indelible mark on the state’s cricketing scene. His sudden departure has left a palpable void within the cricketing community.
In the pivotal match against Tamil Nadu, Hoysala played a pivotal role in Karnataka’s triumph, contributing both with the bat and the ball. His thirteen runs off thirteen balls coupled with the crucial wicket of Tamil Nadu’s opener, P. Parveen Kumar, were instrumental in securing a nail-biting victory for Karnataka. Defending a modest total of 173 runs, Karnataka clinched the win by a mere run, showcasing Hoysala’s invaluable contributions to the team’s success.
Karnataka Council Passes FAR Amendment Bill
Karnataka Council approves FAR Bill amidst uproar. Premium FAR capped at 0.4%, Transferable Development Rights at 0.6%.
The Legislative Council approved the bill enabling the sale and purchase of premium Floor Area Ratio (FAR) despite the BJP members staging a walkout during the session on Thursday.
Presented by Deputy Chief Minister DK Shivakumar, who oversees Bengaluru City Development, the Karnataka Town and Country Planning (Amendment) Bill 2024 received passage in the Council after its prior approval in the Assembly. This legislation permits developers to augment building floors by acquiring additional FAR through a fee payment equivalent to 40% of the guidance value, as sanctioned by local planning authorities. Furthermore, the bill sanctions the sale of FAR.
According to Shivakumar, the inclusion of premium FAR provision is anticipated to augment the revenues of local planning authorities, enabling investment in developmental endeavors. The premium FAR allotment is capped at 0.4%, with Transferable Development Rights limited to 0.6%.
The bill mandates that the proceeds from premium FAR fees be allocated towards land acquisition and the enhancement of basic amenities. Presently, FAR determination hinges on factors like road width, zoning regulations, and other pertinent parameters.
Expressing concerns, BJP MLCs cautioned against potential traffic congestion arising from the proliferation of buildings due to additional FAR. They proposed referring the matter to a select House committee for comprehensive deliberation, while some members advocated for an in-depth discussion before tabling the bill.
Shivakumar defended the legislation, asserting its simplification aimed at benefiting all stakeholders and bolstering the revenues of local planning authorities. He underscored that the previous BJP administration under Basavaraj Bommai had intentions to amend this law.
“We’ve introduced certain amendments to the law. Premium FAR has been operational in Mangaluru for some time now, generating approximately Rs 3,000 crore in additional revenue over the past six years. This amendment extends the same benefit to the entire state,” remarked Shivakumar.
However, BJP members opposed the bill and subsequently staged a walkout from the Council.
In addition, the Council ratified the BBMP Property Tax Amendment Bill, which previously received approval in the Assembly.
Shivakumar elucidated that the bill aimed to rectify an oversight from the previous government, which led to substantial penalties on property owners. He highlighted that the 15th Finance Commission stipulated the release of grants contingent upon property tax aligning with the guidance value, necessitating the introduction of this amendment bill.
Forest personnel in Karnataka search for leopard, find dog
Forest officials in Rajarajeshwari Nagar were on high alert on Monday and Tuesday in response to reports of leopard sightings from concerned residents.
Forest officials in Rajarajeshwari Nagar were on high alert on Monday and Tuesday in response to reports of leopard sightings from concerned residents. However, their efforts were met with an unexpected discovery. Despite the urgency of the calls, upon investigation, officials determined that the alleged leopard was, in fact, a dog.
Responding to multiple calls from RR Nagar residents who claimed to have seen a leopard in their vicinity on February 11 and later on February 19, forest personnel conducted a thorough search operation. However, their efforts yielded no evidence of a big cat prowling the area.
Even as some residents maintained night vigils in hopes of catching a glimpse of the elusive creature, no leopard was sighted. The situation escalated when residents of a local apartment complex shared CCTV footage capturing an animal moving along the road, albeit unclearly.
With concerns mounting, residents promptly alerted forest authorities, presuming the creature to be a leopard. Forest officials mobilized their resources for a comprehensive search, only to discover that the supposed leopard was, in reality, a domestic dog.
The incident highlights the importance of accurate identification and prompt response in wildlife management, even in urban areas where encounters with wildlife are rare but not unheard of.
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