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14 Feb 2022

J&K Govt. awards 23 distinguished persons
The Jammu and Kashmir Government has released a list of 23 persons who have been selected for government awards. These include poet, teacher and social reformer, late Sarvanand Koul Premi and late Harbans Lal Maini, retired Chief Engineer, who have been awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award posthumously.
Sarvanand Koul Premi, along with his elder son, Virender, was kidnapped and murdered by extremists from their ancestral village of Soaf-Shali in South Kashmir’s Anantnag district in 1990. Premi, who fought for secular values and “Kashmiriyat” for all his life, has admirers across religions and ideologies. His death sent shock waves to people who believe in the ideal of an inclusive Kashmir. 
”My father was a poet, patriot, nationalist, freedom fighter, a torchbearer of peace and brotherhood in our country and especially in J&K,” Rajinder, the son of Sarvanand Koul, Premi told ABP Live.
Premi wrote in Kashmiri, Urdu, and Hindi. He is well known for his Urdu translation of the Ramayana and the Kashmiri translation of the Mahabharata. The Kashmiri poet, Mahjoor gave him title “Premi”. He wrote about nature, love, Kashmiriyat, among other things. 
Premi was a freedom fighter who worked alongside many eminent personalities. He participated in the Quit India movement and was arrested six times. He was an advocate of secular values and believed in maintaining unity. One can have a better understanding of his life from the fact that he laid the founding stone of the dargah (shrine) of Hazrat Baba Naseeb-ud-din Gazi in his village.
Hamid Ansari faces flak for critical remarks on nationalism
Agencies / Jan 28, 2022: Former vice-president Hamid Ansari and four US lawmakers expressed concern over the human rights situation in India and the rising trend of Hindu nationalism. His critical remarks at a virtual panel discussion on January 26, 2022, even as India celebrated its 73rd republic Day, drew flak from BJP, VHP and BSP. Union minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said the “madness of bashing PM Narendra Modi has turned into conspiracy for India bashing”.
“In recent years, we have experienced the emergence of trends and practices that dispute the well-established principle of civic nationalism and interpose a new and imaginary practice of cultural nationalism.... It wants to distinguish citizens on the basis of their faith, give vent to intolerance, insinuate otherness, and promote disquiet and insecurity,” PTI reported Ansari as saying.
The discussion was organised by the Indian American Muslim Council (IAMC), an organisation which has tried to get India blacklisted by the US, IANS reported quoting a DisinfoLab report. Actor Swara Bhaskar too participated in the IAMC event, it said.
IAMC was booked under UAPA last year for spreading fake news to incite communal violence and reinforcing     the narrative of minority plight in   India.
“As the Indian government continues to target practices of minority faiths, it creates an atmosphere where discrimination and violence can take root...,” the PTI report quoted Democratic Senator Ed Markey, who has a history of taking anti-India stands, as saying. The three other Congressmen who spoke — Jim McGovern, Andy Levin and Jamie Raskin — have traditionally taken anti-India stands irrespective of the governments in office in New Delhi.
India has rejected criticism by foreign governments and human rights groups on allegations that civil liberties have eroded in the country. The government has emphasised that the Indian Constitution provides for adequate safeguards for ensuring the protection of human rights.
The former vice-president’s remarks drew criticism from a range of organisations.
Naqvi said that on a day when the country was celebrating Republic Day and the “tricolour was unfurled at Srinagar’s Lal Chowk, at the same time, someone who occupied a constitutional post criticised our country, speaking at a platform provided by an organisation that has worked against India and conspired to tarnish its image”. He said the “people who used to exploit minority votes are now anxious about the positive atmosphere in the country”. Naqvi claimed the IAMC “has links with ISI”.
“The statement that Muslim society is insecure due to Hindu nationalism, is extremely unfortunate and condemn-able. Despite being a dignitary like the vice-president of India in the past, he has tried to provoke the Muslim society of India,” VHP joint general secretary Surendra Jain said.
BSP national spokesman Sudhindra Bhadoria too expressed disagreement with Ansari’s statement and said the people of India believe in ‘Sarvadharma Sambhav’. 
(Courtesy: Times of India) 

Varshik Hawan
Shiv Mandir Swarag Ashram (Regd.), Vetesta Enclave, Kashmiri Colony, Paprawat Road, Najafgarh, New Delhi, is organising Varshik Hawan of Shiv Mandir Swarag Ashram on 17th and 18th February, 2022. All residents / baradari members are requested to participate and obtain the blessings of Lord Siva and Mata Rani (Zagat Amba).

Shri Chaman Lal Gadoo, Former President, Kashmiri Samiti Delhi performed the wedding ceremony of his grand son Mayank, son of Smt. Jaya and Shri Sanjay Gadoo with Deepti, daughter of Smt. Madhu and Shri Sanjeev Sharma on Saturday, 5th February, 2022 at Lavanya-3, Raddison Blue Hotel, Kaushambi, Ghaziabad (U.P.).