Srinagar, July 22:The Jammu and Kashmir government has asked its administrative secretaries to set-up six dedicated cells in their respective departments for regular monitoring of progress on identified mega projects, flagship programmes, major schemes, PMDP, other major projects of Government of India and ensuring proper expenditure management.
A government spokesman said that within a month of the proclamation of Governor’s Rule, J&K has started witnessing a “discernible” turnaround in governance through prompt service delivery and proactive public outreach by the government functionaries.
“Governor N NVohra’s focus, during this period, has been on reinforcing administrative discipline to ensure punctuality, accountability, transparency, probity and responsiveness in administration. A robust monitoring mechanism has been put in place at various levels in the administration to ensure appropriate and tangible action on issues of public importance and developmental concerns,” the spokesman said.
Attributing to senior officers, the spokesman said that according to them the Governor, his team of Advisors and the Chief Secretary are “focused on bringing in fresh vibrancy in the administration and infusing a sense of urgency into delivering on the good governance front”.
“The goal is to deliver effective, people-centric governance with focus on ensuring time-bound and fitting response to the issues of public importance,” he said.
“Immediately after it assumed office last month, the reinvigorated state administration led by the Governor embarked on two-pronged strategy of ‘Mission on Good Governance’ and ‘Mission for Delivering Development’. The state’s administrative apparatus is being steadily steered and guided to deliver on these two key counts with focused attention,” the spokesman said.
“The present dispensation is conscious of the fact that the citizens come into contact with the government through public services more often than any other route, and the delivery of public services shapes people’s trust in and expectations of the government,” the spokesman quoted a senior officer in the Governor’s Secretariat.
He said led by the Governor himself, the Advisors, the Chief Secretary and other government functionaries are regularly visiting every nook and corner of the State to personally take stock of the developmental and other public issues in the respective areas and ensure on-the-spot redress.
There is also renewed focus on streamlining various individual administrative matters such as recruitment rules, promotions, pensions/benefits, fast-pacing recruitments, finalizing seniority lists, submission of APRs, personnel complaints, regularization, fast-tracking of departmental enquiries and host of other matters including simplification of procedures for public to access services, he said.
He said the grievances redressal mechanism has been strengthened at various levels to ensure timely response to the issues of public importance highlighted by the media and through other means. “Public grievances highlighted in the media are being monitored on a daily basis and categorized for time-bound action with necessary instructions to the concerned departments,” he said adding that the centralized, J&K Governor’s Grievance Cell, is also addressing the public grievances, brought into its notice, on real-time basis. He said the Advisors as well as the Chief Secretary have also earmarked time for hearing the public grievances and ensuring time-bound redress.
He said the attendance in government offices, which had of late become a causality, is being monitored at the highest level. As a result, attendance in the offices has seen visible jump and as per the Centralized Personnel Information System (CPIS) Database, the Aadhaar Enabled Biometric Attendance System (AEBAS) registration has shown a 50% increase since 22 June, 2018. This system is being extended to all districts, tehsils & blocks, he said.
To enthuse and motivate administration into delivering programmes, projects and services within set timeframe, he said, a slew of circular instructions and DO letters from Chief Secretary’s office are being issued regularly under the guidance of the Governor. “Administrative Secretaries have been asked to prepare and submit a list of deliverables for the next 10, 20 and 30 days. This has not only brought clarity in the functioning of the Departments but has also helped them to set up targets for accomplishment. Administrative Secretaries are monitoring and pursuing these deliverables with commitment and focus,” he said.
He said the Administrative Secretaries, Divisional Commissioners and DCs have been made personally accountable to address and bring to the notice of the Governor’s Secretariat, Advisors and the Chief Secretary, any such matter that has the potential to adversely impact upon the delivery of public services. They have been directed to ensure their presence at the headquarters even during weekends and also to work-out a calendar to balance their commitments within the state and official tours outside J&K, he said adding that on every Monday at 9:45 am, Chief Secretary chairs a brief meeting with the Administrative Secretaries over important issues of common interest.
The officer said to remain in touch with all the Administrative Secretaries, both Divisional Commissioners and all DCs/District SPs, separate WhatsApp Groups have been created, wherein, information and instructions are shared among Advisors, Chief Secretary and concerned officers on real time basis to monitor and promptly respond to any emergent situation, as also important administrative activities.
He said the present dispensation was confronted with the challenge of flood-like situation due to incessant rains in the beginning itself and the Administrative apparatus right from the District to the Secretariat level rose to the occasion to handle the situation effectively. Governor, Advisors and the Chief Secretary worked overnight in assessing and responding to the ground situation and instructions flowed from the top to the bottom prompting swift response at the field level in handling the situation effectually.
Kashmir receives fresh snowfall, aerial traffic affected
By Tabish Shafi
Srinagar, Jan 17: Kashmir on Wednesday received fresh snowfall affecting the aerial traffic and bringing life to halt.
The fresh snowfall in this morning across the Valley disrupted the normal life in Kashmir with surface traffic remaining suspended for a day while as the Srinagar-Jammu highway remained open despite the snowfall.
Authorities in Srinagar Airport said that the flights to and from Srinagar were suspended in view of the prevailing weather conditions as well as the poor visibility.
Officials said that flights will be operational once the weather conditions and visibility will improve.”Due to bad weather/ heavy snowfall, all flights have been cancelled”.
Meanwhile, the 300-km long Srinagar-Jammu highway was open for one-way traffic as there was little or no snowfall in south Kashmir parts on Wednesday.
“Road Status: #Srinagar-Jammu highway open, Traffic plying from Srinagar to #Jammu; Srinagar-Kargil road Closed; Anantnag-Kishtwar road Closed; Mughal Road closed; Bandipora-Gurez road closed; Kupwara-Karnah, Kupwara-Keran, Kupwara-Machail roads closed. @JmuKmrPolice,” Police tweeted.
Director of Meteorological department (MeT), Sonum Lotus said that the light rains as well as snowfall were predicted by the department earlier. “The reports of moderate snowfall were received from some places in Kashmir today,” he said.
He added that the weather would remain mostly cloudy in Kashmir from Jan 18-19, saying that from Jan 19 evening onwards; there is possibility of light rains and snowfall at isolate places.
Lotus further added that the MeT has predicted highly dynamic weather till Jan 23 in Kashmir. “From Jan 20-23, there is possibility of moderate rains and snowfall across the Valley,” he said, adding that the surface as well as the road traffic would also get affected due to the snow spell.
Meanwhile, the state administration claimed to have adequate measures to ensure basic facilities and road clearance during and in the aftermath of fresh snowfall.
The top officials held a series of meetings so far to finalize arrangements in this regard.
The respective district administrations have also asked the officials to gear up for the fresh snow spell as predicted by the Meteorological department
Meanwhile, the day temperatures across the Kashmir Valley nosedived amid fresh snowfall.
A meteorological department official told that Srinagar recorded a maximum of 1.0 degree Celsius, more than six degrees below normal for this time of the year. The capital city saw 5.4 mm of snow (when converted into rain) from 0830 to 1730 hours.
The famous hill resort of Pahalgam recorded a maximum of minus 1.6 degree Celsius and saw snowfall of 8.5mm.
Qazginund, the gateway town of Kashmir, saw a maximum of 2.2 degrees Celsius while Kokernag, also in south Kashmir, recorded a maximum of 1.1 degrees Celsius. Both these places saw zero or traces of snowfall.
The MeT official said the famous ski-resort of Gulmarg in north Kashmir saw a maximum of minus 2.4 degrees Celsius and it had a snowfall of 15.2 mm during the day.
Kupwara town in north Kashmir registered a maximum of 0.8 degrees Celsius, the official said.
JK showcases tourism potential at Asia’s largest travel show
NEW DELHI, JANUARY 16: Launching its aggressive marketing campaign, the Department of Tourism, participated in the 3-day South Asian Travel and Tourism Exhibition (SATTE) travel show which began here on Wednesday.
SATTE is one of the biggest travel shows in Asia providing platform for travel agents, tour operators, hoteliers, destination management companies, tourism boards to sell their products and network to their potential clients from across the globe.
Besides, J&K Tourism Department, over hundred travel agents, hoteliers, other service providers and heads of the various travel and hotel associations from the Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh regions are participating in the travel show to showcase the State’s tourism potential.
Secretary Tourism, Rigzin Samphel, Director Tourism Kashmir Nisar Ahmad Wani and Director Tourism Jammu Om Prakash Bhagat along with other senior officers from the Department participated in the travel show.
They had an interaction with the leading travel agents from within and outside the country and apprised them about the State’s tourism products.
“SATTE is one of the largest tourism shows in Asia where we can promote our tourism destinations. The department will provide all the information about the JK’s destinations, products, services to the visitors to attract them to the state,” the Secretary Tourism said.
Over 20000 visitors, including domestic and international sellers and buyers, State tourism officials, heads of international tourism boards, hoteliers, and aviation experts showcased their products and services to the global trade community.
The travel show also provides an opportunity for the state tourism department to conduct business sessions with the visitors during the travel show.
On the first day, the Tourism Department of at its pavilion screened short films on different destinations for the visitors who were mesmerized to see the stunning beauty. It also showcased State’s splendid art, craft and sumptuous traditional food.
A large number of visitors turned up at J&K pavilion to inquire about the State’s tourism products, new destinations and infrastructure development.
The Department informed them about the pilgrim, MICE, heritage, art and craft, food, known and lesser-known destinations of all the three regions of the state.
The Department also distributed comprehensive publicity material in the form of brochures and pamphlets, pen drives containing travel videos of different destinations to the visitors at its pavilion.
During the convention, Secretary Tourism, Director Tourism Kashmir, Director Tourism Jammu along with heads of local travel and hospitality sector will also hold separate meet with media to apprise them about the Kashmir being the safe tourist destination.
The Director Tourism Kashmir said the department has planned series of road shows and shall also participate in travel marts in the next two months.
“We will be visiting major cities in the country for road shows. We have also planned road shows in countries like Malaysia, Thailand and Bangladesh where from we have got a good response from the travellers,” he said.
All election formalities to be completed by Feb end: Sources
Srinagar, Jan 16 : All election formalities in Jammu and Kashmir are likely to be completed by February end after which the Election Commission of India will take a final call on the dates for the conduct of Lok Sabha and Assembly elections simultaneously.
Top sources while disclosing this to Kashmir News Service (KNS) revealed that the Jammu and Kashmir government has fast paced the process of completing election formalities for both Lok Sabha and Assembly elections by February end and the final electoral roles are likely to be published anytime after January 20.
As already reported the Jammu and Kashmir Chief Electoral Officer Shailendra Kumar held video conference on finalization of electoral roles and other election related arrangements with all the district election officers (DEOs) of all the three regions of the state Tuesday this week.
Sources said the authorities in the election commission will work on the suitability of the location of polling booths across Jammu and Kashmir after January 20 and the process is likely to be completed by February 15.
The Election Commission of India, sources said, is likely to take a final call on the dates for the conduct of Lok Sabha and Assembly elections simultaneously earliest by February end and latest by March 15 and the polling in Jammu and Kashmir is likely to be held in the month of April only.
The polling, sources said, is likely to be held in eight phases adding that the polls in south Kashmir however may be held exclusively on the day when polls in no other part of the state will be held keeping in view the volatile situation in four districts of south Kashmir.