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CRPF officer among 2 killed in militant attack

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Two paramilitary Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel including an officer were killed and two others injured after militants attacked their patrol party near Achabal in South Kashmir’s Anantnag district today.
Militants fired indiscriminately at the CRPF party of 96/D battalion at Achabal today. Three CRPF personnel and a civilian were injured and were taken to nearby hospital for treatment where two critically injured CRPF men succumbed.
The deceased has been identified as Assistant Sub Inspector (ASI), ML Meena and Constable Sandeep Singh Yadav.
The third CRPF personnel was later shifted to Army’s 92 Base Hospital Badamibagh, Srinagar for treatment.
The injured civilian has been identified as Ghulam Rasool and is being treated in the district hospital. His condition is stated to be stable.
The area was immediately cordoned off and a hunt was launched to nab the militants responsible for the attack.
Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) claimed responsibility for the attack, the LeT spokesperson Dr Abdullah Ghazanvi said in a statement .
And thousands of people today participated in the funeral prayers of two militants in Kulgam and Anantnag districts of South Kashmir today.
Bodies of Zahid Rashid Bhat son of Abdul Rashid Bhat of Braihad, Katapora, Yaripora in Kulgam and Nissar Ahmad Bhat son of Ghulam Rasool Bhat of Krad Shangus, Anantnag were exhumed from the Machil sector in North Kashmir’s Kupwara district on Thursday late evening and handed over to their respective families.
The permission for exhumation of the bodies was granted on Thursday after their DNA samples matched with their kin. The bodies were later handed over to the next of their kin after exhumation, he said.
As the bodies of the slain were taken to the respective graveyards, people from the neighbouring areas reached the respective villages at Braihad, Katpora,Yaripora and Krad, Shangus where they participated in the funeral prayers of the duo.
A grenade was found in Tral village of South Kashmir’s Pulwama district today and was later defused by the Bomb Disposal Squad of police.
A suspected object was found by some locals at Hyuna village of Tral and in the meantime, a police team reached the spot and recovered it. The grenade was probably left during an encounter on June 19 last month in which three JeM militants were killed.
Militants today attacked the Police Station Yaripora in South Kashmir’s Kulgam district.
Militants opened fire on the Police Station Yaripora. The guards retaliated. However, there was no injury on the either side.
And authorities foiled separatist march to Naqshband Sahib by imposing restrictions even as Kashmir valley observed a strike today. Authorities also prevented separatist leaders Syed Ali Shah Geelani and Mirwaiz Umar Farooq from marching towards the shrine of Naqshband Sahib (RA) while chairman JKLF Mohammad Yasin Malik, who was arrested by police on July 6, remained lodged at Police Station Kothibagh.
Shops and business established remained closed while traffic was mainly off the roads.
Police and paramilitary CRPF personnel were deployed in strength while barricades and concertina wire were placed on the roads to restrict the movement of people. No Friday prayers were allowed at historic Jamia Majid here.
Strike was observed in all districts and towns of the Valley. In Kupwara, curfew-like restrictions remained imposed in Trehgam where Army on Wednesday had killed a 20-year-old youth while injured another person after stone pelting on their vehicles.
Authorities did not allow Friday prayers at Jamia Masjid Trehgam while stone pelting clashes were reported from Badergam and Hirri areas of the district.
Meanwhile, stone pelting clashes were reported from Nowshera, Soura and Mouchawa area of Srinagar. Police and paramilitary forces resorted to teargas shelling to disperse the protesters. However, there were no reports of injury to anyone in the clashes.

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Yatra resumes, 7351 perform darshan

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After remaining suspended due to inclement weather and rains from both the tracks yesterday, the holy Amarnath yatra was resumed from both shortest Baltal and traditional Pahalgam tracks early this morning.
On 21st day of the yatra, 7,351 pilgrims paid obeisance at cave shrine situated in deep Himalayas in South Kashmir district of Anantnag at an altitude of 3880 meters today.
Till date, 2,08,933 pilgrims have paid obeisance at cave shrine since the two month long yatra started on June 28, an officer on yatra duty said.
He said the yatra is going on smoothly from both the tracks and after being suspended yesterday, it was resumed from twin tracks today.
He said the weather during the day remained dry but cloudy and yatra plied smoothly. However it rained in the evening.
The officer said over 6000 pilgrims left for holy cave from twin tracks and by chopper today. Out of this 3719 pilgrims left from Baltal base camp to holy cave by foot this morning while 1004 left by air.
Besides, 2100 pilgrims left from Nunwan -Pahalgam base camp towards holy cave this morning. Over 10,000 pilgrims are staying at Baltal for night halt today while 4653 pilgrims left for Srinagar on way to their home States today. Besides over 5000 pilgrims are putting up at Pahalgam and Nunwan for night, he added.
He said the yatris having night halt at transit camps of Chandanwari, Sheshnag and Panjtarni also left for their onwards sojourn early this morning.
While the yatris who left Panjtarni this morning performed their darshan in the holy cave today, those from Chandanwari and Sheshnag will spent one to two nights in the next transit camps.
The officer said that out of over two lakh pilgrims who have performed the darshan during last 21 days at holy cave, majority have reached their home States while others are on way back.
The two -month long yatra will culminate on Shravan Purnima coinciding with Raksha Bandhan festival falling on August 26 when holy mace led by Mahant Deepender Giri Ji Maharaj, its sole custodian, will reach cave shrine from Dashnami Akhara Srinagar.
Meanwhile, the 18th batch of 1,983 pilgrims left Bhagwati Nagar Yatri Niwas in a fleet of 59 vehicles under tight security cover in the wee hours today for twin base camps of Nunwan-Pahalgam and Baltal in Kashmir valley.
These yatris will leave for onwards journey form their respective base camps early tomorrow morning.
Yatra Nodal Officer, Jammu, Arun Manhas said that 2178 pilgrims were registered at three registration counters here today. He said over 3000 yatris are camping at Jammu in various lodges, community centers and Yatri Niwas and they will leave for their respective base camps in Kashmir valley early tomorrow morning.

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Rani Mukerji’s ‘Hichki’ to release in Russia

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After receiving a standing ovation at the Shanghai International Film Festival (SIFF), Rani Mukerji’s ‘Hichki’ is all set to hit the big screens in Russia on the occasion of Teachers Day.
The movie will be dubbed in Russian and will release in the country on September 6.
Talking about the same, producer Maneesh Sharma said, “Hichki has touched the hearts of audiences across age-groups, across countries. The film moved audiences at the Shanghai Film Festival where it was screened recently. Now that the film is releasing in Russia, we expect audiences to feel the same emotions that people across the world are feeling after seeing the movie. The relevancy of the subject and the film’s intention to affect a positive social change is appealing universally and thus breaks the language barriers across the globe.”
Adding to the excitement, director Siddharth P Malhotra said, “It’s really heartening that ‘Hichki’ will now release in Russia. The movie professes the message of the fact of making your worst obstacle within you and convert it into your biggest strength by embracing it and working each day to win over it. I’m really excited to see the reaction of audiences in Russia.”
The film ‘Hichki’ is a subtle reminder of discrimination that exists in the society and has become a part of the day-to-day lives.
It highlights this through the story of Naina, played by Rani, who has a nervous system disorder, Tourette syndrome, that forces an individual to make involuntary repetitive movements or sounds.
She faces discrimination from the society that believes she cannot become a teacher because of her disorder. Progressive, brave and positive, the movie is about the power of will and determination.
Directed by Siddharth and produced by Maneesh Sharma, the movie was released on March 23.

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Javelin thrower Neeraj bags gold at Sotteville Athletics meet

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India’s star javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra won a gold medal in Sottevile Athletics meet here on Tuesday.
The 20-year-old covered a distance of 85.17 meters to finish on top of the podium.
Earlier, the Commonwealth Games gold-medalist had given a dazzling performance and finished at the fourth spot in the first edition of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) Diamond League 2018 in Doha breaking the national record with a throw of 87.43 meters.
However, he failed to conjure up the magic in the subsequent edition, which was held in the USA and finished at the sixth spot in the tournament.
In the recently-concluded Diamond League”>Rabat Diamond League, Chopra had finished fifth with an effort of 83.32 meters.
The gold at Sottevile Athletics meet will surely give a boost to Chopra for the challenge in 2018 Asian Games as he is the top medal prospect from Indian athletics team.
Meanwhile, Adrian Mardare of Moldova won silver with a throw of 81.48 meters and Edis Matusevicius of Lithuania settled for bronze after an effort of 79.31meters in the tournament.
On a related note, Asian Games are slated to be held from August 18 to September 2 in Jakarta and Palembang, Indonesia

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