Jammu and Kashmir Current Affairs - 2019

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Mela Kheer Bhawani celebrated in J&K

With commencement of annual festival of Kheer Bhawani Mela on Zeasht Ashtami, hundreds of Kashmiri Pandit devotees prayed at famous Ragnya Devi temple in Jammu and Kashmir’s (J&K) Ganderbal district.

An elaborate security arrangement was made by J&K administration so that mela passed off peacefully for devotees who thronged temple from across the country.

Key Highlights

  • Every year on Zyeshta Ashtami (this year fell on 10 June), thousands of Kashmiri Pandits visit temple, located about 14 km east of Srinagar, to pay their obeisance. Zyestha Ashtami is celebrated by Kashmiri Pandits across the country and outside as the day marks commencing of annual pilgrimage.
  • Temples Visited: Over 60,000 displaced Kashmiri Pandits from various parts of India as well as abroad visited five famous temples of Tulmulla (in Ganderbal district), Tikker (in Kupwara), Laktipora Aishmuqam (in Anantnag) and Mata Tripursundri Devsar and Mata Kheerbhawani Manzgam (in Kulgam district) in Kashmir valley during Mela Kheerbhawani.

About Mela Kheer Bhawani

  • It is one of the biggest religious functions of displaced community of Kashmiri Pandits, who were forcefully evicted from Valley in 1990s by militants.
  • The devotees carry rose petals, walk barefoot, offer tribute to goddess and offer milk and kheer (pudding) at sacred spring.
  • Belief: The colour of water in spring, which flows below temple, is believed to be an indication of the valley’s well-being i.e. the colour foretells the events that will unfold in next 12 months till next festival. Black or darkish colour of water in spring is believed to be a sign of inauspicious times for Kashmir valley. This time, the water in spring was of clean and milky white colour.
  • Significance: The pilgrimage has become a symbol of communal harmony and brotherhood as Muslims in locality make all kinds of arrangements for the Kashmiri Pandits devotees, such as setting up of stalls for flowers and other offerings, offering milk in small earthen pots to devotees coming to pray.

Month: Categories: Art & CultureUPSC

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IAF pay homage to Kargil War Martyrs during Operation Safed Sagar

The Indian Air Force (IAF) Chief Air Chief Marshal (ACM) B.S. Dhanoa visits Air Force Station in Bhisiana and Sarsawa to pay homage to the air warriors who made supreme sacrifice during Operation Safed Sagar at Kargil.

Key Highlights

  • Background: On 28 May 1999 the Indian Air Force lost a Mi-17 helicopter after successfully attacking the enemy in Drass sector (J&K). On this day 1999 Squadron Leader Squadron Leader Ajay Ahuja who was at that time the Flight Commander of 17 Squadron laid down his life along with Squadron Leader R Pundhir, Flight Lieutenant S Muhilan, Sergeant R K Sahu and Sergeant PVNR Prasad who also died in action in that Mi-17 helicopter during the Kargil conflict.
  • About: The Chief of the Air staff (CAS) B. S. Dhanoa paid tribute to Late Squadron Leader Ajay Ahuja and other fallen heroes who lost their life 20 years back during the Kargil war.
  • CAS B.S. Dhanoa flew the ‘missing man’ formation flypast in a Mig-21 aircraft. He was accompanied by Air Marshal R Nambiar, Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief (AOC-in-C) Western Air Command in the ‘missing man’ flypast organised at Air Force Station in Bhisiana in Bhatinda to honour the valour and supreme sacrifice of men killed in action during Operation Safed Sagar at Kargil, J&K.
  • On 28 May the CAS visited Air Force Station Sarsawa and fly in a Mi-17 V5 ‘Missing Man’ formation flypast to commemorate the Kargil martyrs.

About The ‘Missing Man’ formation

  • It is an aerial salute accorded to honour the fallen comrades-in-arms. It is basically an Arrow Formation, with a gap between two aircraft in a way that the formation depicts the Missing Man.

About Operation Safed Sagar (or “Operation White Sea”)

  • It was the code name assigned to Indian Air Force’s (IAF) role in acting jointly with Ground troops of Indian Army during the Kargil war in 1999.
  • It was aimed at flushing out Regular and Irregular troops of Pakistani Army from vacated Indian Positions in Kargil sector along Line of Control (LOC).
  • Since 1971 Indo-Pakistani War, it was the first large scale use of Airpower in Jammu and Kashmir region.

Month: Categories: Defence & Security

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