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NEW DELHI: Chief Minister, Mehbooba Mufti has paid rich tributes to the two soldiers who were killed in an incident of cross border shelling in Sunderbani sector of LoC early today. The Chief Minister has conveyed her sympathies to the bereaved families. Deputy Chief Minister Dr Nirmal Singh has paid rich tributes two soldiers who were killed in firing from across the border in Sunderbani sector of Rajouri. While paying rich tributes to the slain soldiers, Dr Singh said that the sacrifices rendered by the valiant soldiers will be remembered for ever. The slain soldiers Rifleman Vinod Singh, 24, belongs to Jaurian’sDanapur village in Akhnoor and Rifleman Jaki Sharma, 30, hails from Hiranagar’sSanhail village in Kathua district.

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  • Appeals for finding ways to end bloodshed, alienation among youth in the State
  • Also pitches for taking cross LoC connectivity to higher levels, de-escalating border tensions

NEW DELHI: Three days after appealing the country’s  leadership to listen to the voices of pain from the State, Chief Minister, Mehbooba Mufti today called on the Prime Minister, Narendra Modi here today and apprised him about the overall obtaining situation in Jammu & Kashmir. During the meeting, the Chief Minister stressed on finding ways and means to end the cycle of violence in the State by addressing the element of alienation among youth. She said the people of the State having suffered immensely during the turmoil of past three decades are looking upto the country’s political leadership to support them in getting out of this cycle of uncertainty and deaths.

 

Reiterating her demand for peaceful engagement with all stakeholders in this regard, the Chief Minister sought more frequent meetings at the highest levels between the two countries. She also favoured the idea that the two Army commands be in touch with each other to minimise the level of tension across the borders in the State which has affected lakhs of people living in these areas.

During the meeting, Mehbooba Mufti also pleaded for taking the cross LoC movement to next higher level by working on opening more historic routes across the LoC and movement of more people to build public confidence in the peaceful engagements. She also pleaded for working for opening Sharda Peth, ancient seat of learning across LoC, and developing it like Nalanda and Takshila. During the meeting, implementation of AoA, execution of PMDP and other mega developmental projects in the State also came up for discussion during the meeting.

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JEDDAH: The ban on watching cinema in public places was lifted after Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud introduced some liberal changes in the economic and social order of the orthodox Muslim community here. Saudi Arabia will have its first cinema in 35 years which will open on April 18 in Riyadh, agencies reported. The ban on watching cinema in public places was lifted after Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud introduced some liberal changes in the economic and social order of the orthodox Muslim community here. This was welcomed by all and the first film to be screened would be the Marvel’s superhero, Black Panther.

 

The economic reforms is intended on making Saudi Arab less dependent on oil and opens other revenue sources, Reuters  reported. This is one among the many big-ticket reforms introduced by Mohammed bin Salman. He kicked it off declaring that women in Saudi should be allowed to drive. The Prince also declared that women should be allowed in sports stadium to watch matches. Earlier they were anly allowed to watch sports events from lounge.

 

He also reduced the power of the religious clerics, institutions that police dress code of women in public spaces. Also, he intends to lead Saudi Arabia towards a more liberal interpretation of other religions. Films, especially Hollywood ones are quite popular in Saudi homes. But in 1970s cinema halls were banned due to strict islamist regime orders. AMC Entertainment has been granted the first licence to operate cinemas, with Saudi state media saying the US giant is expected to open 40 cinemas across 15 Saudi cities over the next five years. "AMC plans to open the kingdom's first cinema theatre in Riyadh on April 18," the information ministry's Centre for International Communication said in a statement.

 

“We think it’s going to be the prettiest movie theater in the world. It’s a dramatic building,” AMC Chief Executive Adam Aron told Reuters. Also, there would be no separate seating arrangement for men and women, like most places in Saudi. Saudi Arabia wants to set up 350 cinemas with over 2,500 screens by 2030 for a population of more than 32 million. Hoping this would attract nearly $1 billion in annual ticket sales, Reuters reported.

 

"The Saudi market is very large, with the majority of the population... Eager to watch their favourite films here at home," the statement by information ministry read. International theatre chains have long eyed the kingdom as the Middle East's last untapped mass market of more than 30 million people, the majority of whom are under 25. In February, Saudi Arabia's General Entertainment Authority (GEA) announced it will stage more than 5,000 festivals and concerts in 2018, double the number of last year, and pump $64billion in the sector in the coming decade. The reform stems partly from an economic motive to boost domestic spending on entertainment as the kingdom reels from an oil slump since 2014. Saudis currently splurge billions of dollars annually to see films and visit amusement parks in neighbouring tourist hubs like Dubai.