Local channels back on air; national, Pak channels still off air

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Srinagar, Sep 2 (UNI) All the locals channels are back on air after nine days as the authorities have agreed to allow them to telecast news and current affairs programme.

''We are resuming our normal transmission from today and news and current affairs programmes will be telecast as usual at 1700 hrs in the evening,'' a cable operator said.

He said after discussions, the authorities decided to allow them to telecast news and current affairs programme. However, he said a formal order from the District Magistrate allowing the telecast programmes was yet to be received.''We expect the order will come in the afternoon,'' he added.

The District Magistrate, Srinagar, had directed the cable operators not to telecast news and current affairs programme on August 24.

The local channels had telecast live the programmes related to Muzaffarabad, UN Military Observers Office here, Pampore and Eidgah chalo, calls for which were given by the Coordination Committee (CC), spearheading the present agitation in the Valley.

The cable operators, in retaliation, stopped airing any national news channel. Even Pakistan channels--PTV and Geo also remained off the air. However, only ETV-Urdu was available along with Doordarshan channels in the Kashmir valley.

The cable operators said they would resume normal telecast of national news channels after receiving, an order from the authorities.

Almost all newspapers, which could not be published because of curfew restrictions from August 24, resumed normal publication in the valley from today. However, several leading newspapers both in English and Urdu hit the stand two days ago after the authorities provided special curfew passes to their staff.

The newspapers published from Jammu, Chandigrah and New Delhi also could not reach the readers because of the lack of means to circulate these following the curfew.

The management of a leading English daily Greater Kashmir, available on Internet only, said they could not publish the newspaper, as the staff could not make it to office due to curfew restrictions.

About a dozen mediapersons, including photo journalists, were injured after they were beaten by the CRPF despite having curfew passes during the one-week long curfew restrictions.

People in the Kashmir valley, having the facility, were using internet to peruse the newspapers.

UNI BAS ASM RR AS1540

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